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Page 2, Archives #3

Freddy Powers with Merle
           Freddy Powers tours with Merle Haggard as Featured Artist or Opening act on this Merle tour beginning January 15, 2004 see dates listed below:

Thu 01/15/04 Robinsonville, MS - Horseshoe Casino
  Fri 01/16/04 Robinsonville, MS - Horseshoe Casino
Sat 01/17/04 Biloxi, MS - Grand Casino Biloxi
  Sun 01/18/04 Biloxi, MS - Grand Casino Biloxi
  Mon 01/19/04 Savannah, GA Lucas Theater
Tue 01/20/04 Greenville, SC - Peace Center
  Thu 01/22/04 Jacksonville, FL - Free Bird Cafe
  Fri 01/23/04 Punta Gorda, FL - Charlotte Co. Memorial Aud.>
  Sat 01/24/04 - Silver Springs, FL - Dothan, AL - Dothan Civic Ctr. Arena
           Freddy's new cd produced by Merle Haggard "All I Want To Do Is Sing My Song" featuring Merle Haggard and Freddy Powers Duets, is schedule for February release..... "Lets Talk About Freddy" "Chat with/about FP with his Family and Friends aka Freddy Powers and Bill McDavid
           "The Country Jazz Singer" Collectors Edition personally autographed AVAILABLE AT THE FREDDY POWERS WEB SITE

Anecdotes of Classic Country Music
Artists, Writers and Musicians

            "Gabby" has just released a new book written about a classic country music radio legend in north Florida known as Gabby from WGWD radio. The book is titled Gabby's Gold: Anecdotes of Classic Country Music Artists, Writers and Musicians. More information is available on the website
            Gabby has been involved in the country music music business for over forty years and shares with the readers the history of the classic country music era, from the late nineteen fifties through the eighties and even today. Gabby is a humorous southern gentleman and has had personal working experiences with country music artists, writers and musicians and shares anecdotes and tidbits about them.  He lives to promote classic country music and keep its heritage alive in today's country rock scene.
            He interviewed many of the classic country stars, writers and promoters and include a long chapter on some of their experiences throughout their successful careers. The reader will find the book educational and humorous, and will surely take a stroll down memory lane as he/she reads the many tidbits that are little or unknown.

Mother of Merle Kilgore R.I.P.
           Conway, Arkansas - Gladys B. Kilgore, 94, of Conway, Arkansas, died on December 22, 2003, at approx 4:00 pm. Ms. Kilgore was born October 30, 1909, in Conway, Arkansas to the late Frances and George Bell. A graduate from Oklahoma Central University, Ms. Kilgore became a high school teacher in Louisiana and Oklahoma. In 938, Ms. Kilgore moved to Shreveport, Louisiana, and remained there until 1998 when she moved back to Conway, Arkansas.
           Her husband, Wyatt Kilgore, preceded Ms. Kilgore in death. She is survived by a son, W. Merle Kilgore (songwriter of Wolverton Mountain, Johnny Reb, and co-writer of Ring of Fire w/ June Carter Cash) and wife, Judy, of Paris, Tennessee; a daughter, Charlotte Craig and husband, Don of Conway, Arkansas; five grandchildren and six great grandchildren.

New Year's Eve in Nashville
The club, "Harley Holt Building," located at 317 Broadway, downtown Nashville will host a giant bash featuring Ronnie McDowell and the Rhythm Kings. Buffet from 7-9, party favors, champagne toast at midnight. By reservation only. Please call 615-726-0463.
Also, TOOTSIE'S will be running 4 bands on New Years Eve. So plan to ring in the new year on Nashville famous "Lower Broadway" - honky tonk street USA.

Who Was Jenks "Tex" Carman?
Hear him on CD:
           JENKS "TEX" CARMAN - The Old Guitar And Me (Bear Family BCD 16652 AH)
           JENKS "TEX" CARMAN - Cow Punk (Bear Family BCD 16668 AH)
See him on DVD:
           JENKS "TEX" CARMAN - At Town Hall Party (Bear Family BVD 20006 AT)
           Jenks "Tex" Carman. Who and what was he? A half century ago he was making country records unlike anybody else's. No amount of smoothing could remove his kind of rough edges. Was he the "first punk country artist?" Did Carman really have an alternative musical vision or was he simply a borderline psychotic, blazing his own trail and giving voice to the odd collection of sounds in his head? Here was a man you couldn't display during prime time. At least not in 1955. A half century later, audiences are a lot more open to hybrid music and category bending. "Tex" Carman might have been right at home as opening act for a 21st century psychobilly band. Too bad he was born 50 years too soon. -HANK DAVIS (Goldmine magazine)
           The World is about to rediscover Jenks "Tex" Carman on Bear Family Records. Bear Family Records, PO Box 1154, 27727 Hambergen, Germany (email - distributed in the U.K. by Rollercoaster Records, Rock House, London Road, St. Mary's, Stroud, Glos GL6 8PU (email -

A Country Collection: We're Louvin It
From the Chicago Sun-Times: - November 30, 2003, BY DAVE HOEKSTRA
           BELL BUCKLE, Tenn. -- One of the most extraordinary scenes in the cluttered Louvin Brothers Museum is a miniature church that high tenor Ira Louvin hand-carved from plywood. The detailed church features a miniature pulpit and poplar figurines that depict a five-voice African-American choir and African-American preacher.
           If the middle Tennessee light hits the church right, you can bend over, peek through a tiny window and see an open grave underneath the church. According to younger brother Charlie, Ira made the complex structure in 1950 after hearing Red Foley's "Steal Away."
           This piece of folk art begins to explain the Louvin Brothers. The Louvin Brothers are the most influential harmony group in country music history. In a time of Eisenhower-era optimism, the Louvins' gospel-influenced material was foreboding. Members of the Country Music Hall of Fame, the Louvin Brothers sang songs like the Carter Family's "The Kneeling Drunkard's Plea" and originals such as "Satan Is Real."
           Bassist Marshall Grant is the last surviving member of Johnny Cash and the Tennessee Two that bolted out of Sun Records in the summer of 1955. At the Johnny Cash Tribute concert held earlier this month in Nashville, Grant told the gathering, "All we wanted to do was gospel. We idolized the Louvin Brothers."
           A rare picture of a young Cash and Charlie Louvin at the Grand Ole Opry is one of the many treasures that hang in the Louvin Brothers Museum in rural Bell Buckle, about 70 miles southeast of Nashville. The picture is autographed by Cash.
           Trouble is that Bell Buckle is so rural (pop. 1,000), not many people saw the museum after it opened in 1995 adjacent to the L&N Railroad tracks. On Jan. 1 the museum will reopen next door to the Ernest Tubb Record Shop, 2416 Music Valley Dr. in Nashville (615-889-2474).

The Louvins are movin'.
           Charlie Louvin, a spry 76 years old, is overseeing the move. Ira died in a fiery car crash on Interstate 70, east of Williamsburg, Mo., on Father's Day in 1965. He was 41. The brothers had split as a performing duo in 1963. At the time of his death, Ira was on the road with Florence, his fourth wife and a musician in his band. Florence was also killed in the head-on accident.
           The museum includes two pictures of the car crash. The framed pictures are hung near the contract from the last joint Ira worked on June 16-19, 1965: Genova's Chestnut Inn, 2820 12th St., Kansas City, Mo.
           The museum also has a fan letter from Alabama Gov. George Wallace, a pipe that Ira smoked in 1951 and the first photograph of Charlie (at age 13) and Ira (at age 16) ever taken. It was shot by a neighbor lady who lived up the road from them in their native Henegar, Ala.
           And don't miss the wall of original vintage Louvin Brothers album covers such as "Satan Is Real." Charlie and Ira themselves designed the devil-with-a-pitchfork backdrop with rocks and scrap rubber. (While creating the devil's fire, the prop started burning and nearly engulfed the brothers in flames.) Brand-new "Satan Is Real" T-shirts are available for $15.
           The Louvin Brothers Museum is the most colorful music landmark I've visited since Ernie K. Doe's Mother-In-Law Lounge in New Orleans.

The Louvin Brothers didn't know they were making history as they were making music.
           "Considering how we were raised, music was easier than pickin' cotton or following the mule in the field," Louvin says. "If I brought something from our career home, my wife saved it. At one time, all this stuff in the museum was in the house. It got to the point where there was no place to live. She saved everything."
           In fact, Charlie's wife, Betty, constructed a museum wall montage of more than 50 Louvin Brothers 45s as well as Charlie's singles. I reckon there's a single for every year Charlie and Betty have been married: 54 years.
           Look for Charlie's single, "Tonight I'm Going to the Gallos," produced in the 1970s by Ernest Tubb producer Pete Drake. Louvin laughs and says, "He wants to get loaded, but it's not the gallows. It's Gallos Brothers wine."
           Near Betty's wall of sound, a pair of autographed baseballs caught my eye. They were tucked away in the back of a clear case. "Me, my brother and Roy Acuff played a benefit concert in Dizzy Dean's hometown [Lucas, Ark.]," Louvin says. "At the time I had two sons. I asked Dizzy for an autographed baseball for them. There's some precious autographs there. My wife traced over them. She made a $5,000 ball into a 50-cent ball."
           The miscue didn't stop Louvin from remembering Betty during a tour of Japan. A tiny geisha girl sits alone in a museum case. Louvin looks at the doll, dressed in a long orange kimono. Louvin sheepishly says, "I held that in my lap all the way home. Good thing the times weren't as they are now. They would have taken the doll apart." Across the way from the doll sits a battery-operated Zenith radio Ira and Charlie gave their mother, Georgiane Elizabeth, in 1948. She was the daughter of a Baptist preacher. The Louvin family's Alabama homestead did not have electricity. The radio sits next to a CB radio from the 1970s.
           Louvin says most Grand Ole Opry members have visited the museum, as did Gene Autry and Roy Rogers. The best thing about visiting the museum is having Louvin as your tour guide. He has a story for every step of the way.
           Louvin stops at the picture of Cash. His face gets straight and serious. "I met John when he was 12 years old," Louvin says. "My brother and I were working with Smilin' Eddie Hill in Memphis. We played the closest thing to John's hometown. He lived in an Arkansas cottonfield. It was my job to sell tickets. I was about 18. I noticed a little guy with overalls on, barefooted, but no shirt. I had to go to the bathroom so John led me to the outhouse.
           "When I came back outside, I reached into my shirt pocket. I had a pack of two soda crackers. I started eating them. John asked why I was eating them and to be a wise guy I said, 'To keep from starving to death.' He later said that the first few years he was singing, before he'd go onstage he'd get him a couple of soda crackers and eat them. "He still didn't think I was eating them to keep from starving."

Charlie Louvin is the personification of traditional country music around Nashville.
           He is a loyal member of the Grand Ole Opry and appears on the Opry every other weekend. A couple of months ago the Louvin Brothers were the subject of a remarkable tribute album that included guest appearances by James Taylor, Merle Haggard, Emmylou Harris and one of the last recordings by Johnny Cash.
           And in December 1996, country legend Faron Young committed suicide by shooting himself in the head. I attended Young's visitation at Woodland Memorial Gardens in Nashville. Everyone should attend a traditional Nashville country singer visitation.
           Charlie Louvin was the first face I recognized at the visitation. He held a small camera that served as a metaphor for his memories. "I've never had a hangover in my life," Louvin says "I've never been on a high. So this kind of excludes me from the party boys. But I hate to see them leave. I thought I'd live long enough to see some jealous husband shoot Faron. But I'd never imagine he'd take his own life.
           "I've known them all. I don't know of an enemy I have in the business. I despise some people's actions, but I hate no one. Usually hate will damage the person that's doing the hating. And the person you hate, they don't even know you hate them."
           Louvin stands near a black and white photograph of the Grand Ole Opry in 1957. There are more than 60 Opry members in the picture. Louvin has affixed small black dots near the faces of the Opry members who have died. The picture is full of black dots. Connect the dots.

See the Louvin Brothers Museum while you can.
           A NOTCH ABOVE: Just because the Louvin Brothers Museum is leaving Bell Buckle doesn't mean the small town isn't worth a look-see. "Well, I used to live over here at Wartrace, which is just over here," Louvin explains. "People say, 'Why did you locate here?' I'm an Alabama boy, but I've lived in Tennessee for 50 years. The man who owns the [Bell Buckle] cafe owns this land. He said we could build on it. As long as it's a museum, you don't pay rent."
           Bell Buckle is so small it really doesn't have a main street, but the quaint main drag is anchored by several antique stores. My favorite stop was Sweet Retreat, 6 Railroad Square (931-389-0012). Located in an old feed and seed store, the Sweet Retreat combines an ice cream shop and several rooms of furniture, jewelry, glassware, quilts and other antiques.
           But best of all, near the rear of the store I stumbled across a woman baking cakes in a small room. Miss Abigail's Cakes (931-389-0304) makes all sorts of delights, including the belt-snapping Bell Buckle Lemonade Cake. The three-layer cake stands 8 inches tall and is a mild lemon cake with creamy lemonade filling, topped with buttery lemon frosting and made with fresh lemon juice and zest.
           Bell Buckle is also the site of the famous RC & Moon Pie Festival. The 10th annual festival is scheduled for June 19, 2004. Besides RC Cola and Moon Pies (popularized in song by the band NRBQ), the festival incorporates arts, crafts and regional cuisine. For more information on Bell Buckle, call (931) 389-9663 or visit

Louvin Brothers Tribute: December 13th
           Some of today's top stars are stepping onto the Opry stage to pay homage to one of country music's most renowned duos of all time, the Louvin Brothers, during a special tribute show Saturday, Dec. 13. Dierks Bentley, Terri Clark, Ronnie Dunn, Rebecca Lynn Howard, Del McCoury, Joe Nichols, Jon Randall, and Rhonda Vincent are among those scheduled to appear along with Opry and Country Music Hall of Fame member Charlie Louvin as the Opry continues its winter run at the historic Ryman Auditorium. One hour of the performances will air on "Grand Ole Opry Live" on GAC: Great American Country at 7 p.m. Central.
           These performers can be heard performing songs popularized by Ira and Charlie Louvin and included on the new collaboration, CD Livin', Lovin', Losin': Songs of the Louvin Brothers, on Universal South Records. The project was released Sept. 30.
           The Louvin Brothers, who are members of the Songwriters' Hall of Fame and were inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame in 2002, became members of the Grand Ole Opry in 1955. Before Ira's death in a car accident in 1965, they penned more than 500 songs. Many of those now-classics such as "If I Could Only Win Your Love," "Cash On The Barrelhead," "I Don't Believe You've Met My Baby," and "How's The World Treating You" can be found on their tribute CD.
           Opry tickets are available by calling (615) 871-OPRY or by logging on to Adult ticket prices range from $44.50-$32.50, and prices for children (ages 4-11) range from $44.50-$22.50.

"The Season's Coolest CD"
           Called "the season's coolest CD" by The Dallas Morning News, the Nokie Edwards & The Light Crust Doughboys album, A SURF N SWING-FRET N STRING CHRISTMAS, is now available for your seasonal listening pleasure. The king of instro guitar, Nokie, joins the kings of western swing for a delightful, eclectic romp through Christmas carols, Hawaiian-flavored songs and even a bit of surf rock in tribute to the former lead guitarist of The Ventures. And where else can you hear fifty banjos for Christmas? A SURF N SWING-FRET N STRING CHRISTMAS is a must-have CD for every fan of the electric and acoustic guitar, folk music, western swing, Christmas spirituals, and dixieland banjo. Among the album's highlights are some of the last recorded works of Smokey Montgomery (1913-2001), acclaimed Light Crust Doughboy banjoist from 1935-2001.
           Join The Light Crust Doughboys for their annual Christmas concert/party and CD signing at Dallas' Pocket Sandwich Theatre on Dec. 1, phone 214/821-1860. Visit and for further information and have A SURF N SWING-FRET N STRING CHRISTMAS.

Derailers Split
As posted on the Steel Guitar Forum by their steel player Chris Schlotzhauer:
           "New Years Eve will be the last date for the Derailers. I guess I can officially post this, because they are announcing this publicly from the stage at our performances. Part of the reason is personal, which I won't go into on this forum. The other is business, and the way Sony has mistreated the band.
           I have had the pleasure of playing with this great band for years, touring all over the country, playing places I would have never had the opportunity to play before. The Opry, Jerry Lewis telethon, fan fair, Buck’s Palace are just the highlights. This experience has, more than anything, brought me, and my playing, back to real, traditional country music. It has improved my playing and performance skills tenfold. It saddens me for this to come to an end, but I feel that their music catalog will transcend years to come. Their popularity nationwide and worldwide I have witnessed firsthand. The country scenes in cities like LA, San Francisco, Seattle, NYC have grown from their inspiration. First time listeners become immediate fans when they hear real country and wonder why all "country" isn't this way anymore. This is the real tragedy here. Because traditional country gets shot down again. I would like to thank Tony Villanueva, Brian Hofeldt, Ed Adkins, and Scott Mathews for their friendship and letting me share this great musical experience. I'm not sure I can top this experience, so I will always cherish it.
           It is an honor to have been associated with all the great steelers who have performed with the Derailers. I think the list would include: Marty Muse, Mike Daily, Scott Walls, Kevin Owens, Dan Dougmore, Bruce Bouton, Pete Finney, Ricky Davis, Tommy Detamore, Tommy White, J.D. Mainess (sp). If I missed someone, let me know."
           If you want to catch the Derailers between now and NYE, the last remaining shows are:
11-28 VFW 3837 - Corpus Cristi, TX
11-29 Floores Country Store - Helotes, TX
12-5 The Cotton Club - Granger, TX
12-6 Sons of Hermann Hall - Dallas, TX
12-20 The Broken Spoke - Austin, TV
12-21 Armadillo Christmas Bazaar/Austin Music Hall - Austin, TX
12-31 Gruene Hall - New Years Eve w/Robert Earl Keen - New Braunfels, TX

Bob White: Rest in Peace
               Floyd L. "Bobby" White passed away 21 November 2003 at Fort Smith, Arkansas. He was born 15 June 1932 at Jenny Lind, Arkansas to R. F. and Zella White. He was preceded in death by his brother, CB White and his parents. Surviving daughters include Cathy, Laura and Snow. Surviving sons are Ricky, Robert and Bobby.
               Bob White was a world class musician, master of the steel guitar. He played, as a teenager, with Bob Wills' Texas Playboys. After leaving the Playboys, Bob joined up with Hank Thompson's Brazos Valley Boys. The Brazos Valley Boys were selected country touring band of the year, by Billboard Magazine, for 14 consecutive years. He was a member of the Steel Guitar Hall of fame and is credited with pioneering the 10 string steel guitar. He originated scores of enduring licks and riffs and introduced the Major 7th and Major 9th pedal changes. Bob was considered the foremost swing steel player of the 1950's.
               Bob retired from the road in the early 1970's and returned home to Fort Smith, Arkansas. He was a well known nightclub owner for many years in Fort Smith, he and his brother ran a family business that was originally opened circa 1946. This was known as the Crossroads Club. Bob performed with a house band there for many years.
               Unless you ever heard Bob play steel guitar there would be no way to describe the pure electricity that flew from his hands, he was a legend.

Charle Pride CD: A Collection of New Gems
               What's not to love when one of country music's most enduring and beloved legends surrounds himself on a new release with great new music - provided not only by the best new pens in the music industry but the original producer and songwriting great that have helped build said legend an unforgettable foundation of signature hits.
               The legend in question - CHARLEY PRIDE - shows the continued genius he has for reaching new generations of country music fans by assembling the "masters" on his newest collection, "Comfort Of Her Wings." The title track, from the pen of one of country music's hottest new artists - Darryl Worley ("Have You Forgotten?") - in creative alliance with Vip Vipperman and J.B. Rudd. Charley's voice - as always warm and rich as molasses on a hot Georgia day - is the perfect compliment to a song that needs to heard in today's world where comfort is at a premium.
               With a remarkable 70 million albums sold (a feat second only to Elvis in the history books at RCA Records) 36 #1singles, 31 gold albums, 4 platinum albums and 1 quadruple platinum award lining the corridors of remarkable career that expansively spans through five decades, where can Charley Pride hope to go from here?
               The answer in this, his first - all new' collection of music in a decade, brilliantly rested in recapturing the magic that original made Charley Pride one of the greatest artists in country music history. "Comfort Of Her Wings" reunites Pride with legendary producer "Cowboy" Jack Clement, under whose watchful eye in the studio, Charley - who had originally hoped for a career in baseball - stepped before the microphone to hit homeruns on 20 of his greatest album successes. Also suited up for the new project: Songwriting great Ben Peters - whose all-star catalogue of hits that put him in the Songwriters Hall of Fame (and Charley himself in the Country Music Hall Of Fame in 2000) will forever include Pride hits "Kiss An Angel Goodmorning," "Burgers And Fries," and "You're So Good When You're Bad," to mention only a trio of greats. Together again in the studio, the masters prove they've lost none of the "old touch!"
               Amidst the collection of thirteen gems, another stand-out is a sparkling new song, "Field Of Dreams," which features a guest appearance by Charley's fellow multiple CMA winner (as "Female Vocalist Of The Year") Janie Fricke who adds the perfect ingredient of vocal icing to a wonderful mix.
               Charley Pride has nothing left to prove. His career and his accomplishments speak volumes for themselves. But what he does have is a vast assortment of musical riches yet to contribute to a world of fans - both old and new - as proven by the release of "Comfort Of Her Wings." Is Charley Pride proud? If not he should be.

Worth a Click ...
Disc Jockey Seeks to Put the Yo! Back in Yodeling

Canadian Pioneer Gary Buck Passes On
           Followup update on story already posted below. (Country Recording Artist, Producer, also founded Canadian Country Music Hall of Fame).
           GARY BUCK, 63, long one of Canadian country music's most renowned and versatile personalties, died, October 14th, 2003, in hospital in Didsbury, Alberta, following a battle with cancer. Gary Buck enjoyed a lengthy career in country music, and was involved in most every aspect of the music industry, both in Canada and the U.S.
           Born March 21, 1940 in Thessalon, Ontario, Gary Buck was raised in Sault Ste. Marie, and later made his home in Kitchener, Ontario. In recent years he had resided in Didsbury, Alberta; and maintained working offices in both Calgary and in Nashville.
           In his teen years Gary Buck honed his performing talents on radio and stages in hometown Sault Ste. Marie, and by his early twenties embarked on a recording career which paid immediate dividends when he scored a #1 hit on the U.S. Cashbox Country charts with his hit single, Happy To Be Unhappy. He became only the third Canadian to earn a spot on the prestigious Billboard Country Hit Charts in the U.S., following in the steps of the immortal Hank Snow and Country Hall of Famer, Myrna Lorrie.
           Gary Buck's recording career eventually spanned some five decades on the hit charts, with dozens of hit singles and numerous albums released in Canada and the U.S. on various record labels including Petal, Sparton, RCA, Capitol, Quality and his own Broadland Records label which was also home for many of Canada's top country recording artists. Gary Buck's most notable Canadian chart hits included The Weatherman, Break The News To Lisa, Mr. Brown, Wayward Woman Of the World, etc. all of which reached #1 on the RPM charts in Canada during the late 1960's ñ early 70's. His recording successes also led to his own TV show which aired for five seasons out of CKCO-TV studios in Kitchener.
           As a record producer Gary Buck's credits are unparalleled in Canadian country music. From the late 1960's through the new millennium, Gary Buck produced albums for many of Canada's award-winning acts including Dick Damron, The Mercey Brothers., Family Brown, Tommy Hunter, Al Cherny, Orval Prophet, Dallas Harms, Wayne Rostad, and dozens more. His production talents also reached into Nashville studios where he helmed albums for such notable Nashville stars as George Hamilton IV, Billie Jo Spears, Johnny Duncan, and Gene Watson.
           In the music publishing area, Gary Buck was also instrumental in seeing many of Canada's top songs gain prominence. As head of Beechwood Music, the publishing arm of Capitol Records in Canada, Gary Buck spearheaded initial interest in such songs as Anne Murray's Snowbird, Dick Damron's Countryfied (recorded by George Hamilton IV) and the Dallas Harms composition Paper Rosie, recorded by Gene Watson.
           As a songwriter Gary Buck wrote his own early career hit Stepping Out Of The Picture, and the title track from his 2002 country / gospel album, Don't Be Standin' On The Outside. His compositions have also been recorded by Tommy Hunter, The Mercey Brothers, Joyce Smith, Orval Prophet, Gordie Tapp, Bobby Curtola, Mike Graham, and many more.
           As a music industry builder, again Gary Buck's contributions go unmatched. During the 1970's he held several terms as an International Director in Nashville's Country Music Association (CMA); and later was among the founding Directors of the Academy Of Country Music (ACME) which later evolved into the Canadian Country Music Association (CCMA). Perhaps the achievement Gary Buck was most proud of was the founding and establishment of the Canadian Country Music Hall of Fame which was launched in Kitchener, Ontario in 1989; and has since found a permanent home site at the Stampede Grounds in Calgary. It was a fitting recognition that Gary Buck himself was inducted into the Canadian Country Music Hall of Fame in 2001 by the Canadian Country Music Association.
           A true ëpioneer' in country music, Gary Buck was still a recording force some five decades after his 1963 chart debut. In 1998 he released the album Western Swing ën Country, and a fitting close to his recording legacy came with a country gospel CD collection entitled Don't Be Standing On The Outside, released in 2002.
           Gary Buck is survived by his wife Deb and son Matthew of Didsbury, Alberta; son Raymond from Kitchener and daughters Trudy, Kailie and Christine, all of Ontario. br>           (For more information on Gary Buck see "The Gary Buck Story", published by COUNTRY MUSIC NEWS, September, 2001 - also available online at

Tex Ritter's Window Dies
           Dorothy Southworth Ritter, widow of country western actor and singer, Tex Ritter, and mother of recently deceased TV and movie actor, John Ritter, succumbed on Wednesday, November 5, 2003, after a long illness at the Motion Picture and Television Home in Woodland Hills, California. She was born in Prescott, Arizona on April 4, 1915. She graduated from Hollywood High School, attended U.S.C., the Royal Academy of Acting in London, and trained at the Pasadena Playhouse.
           She co-starred in several films including from Arizon a, Sundown on the Prairie, and Over the Range where she met her future husband, Tex Ritter, whom she married in 1941 at the First Congregational Church in Prescott. They subsequently resided in Toluca Lake, California. Her son, John Ritter, is best known for his successful television sitcoms, Company, Hearth's Afire, and most recently Simple Rules. John also starred in films including Deep, Sling Blade, and the upcoming Santa. She is survived by her son, Tom Ritter, his wif e, Pamela; her late son John's widow, Amy Yasbeck; John's first wife, Nancy Morgan; and four grandchildren, Jason, also an actor who co-stars in of Arcadia; Carly, a Senior at Vassar College; Tyler, a Freshman at University of Pennsylvania; and Stella, who just started kindergarten.
           Dorothy was a vivacious, dynamic, and charming woman. Her family was the focus of her life. She gave them her joy, support, and encouragement to pursue their dreams and to strive to live and experience life to the full est. She was Tex's, John's and Tom's greatest fan. She volunteered and supported the community for decades through her work for Untied Cerebral Palsy and other charitable organizations. In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be given to the Motion Picture and Television Home in Woodland Hills, California, or your local United Cerebral Palsy Association affiliate.

Alabama Extends the American Farewell Tour
           Nov. 6, 2003 - Due to extraordinary fan response and overwhelming ticket demand, Country Group of the Century, Alabama, has announced the continuation of the The American Farewell Tour. Country music fans worldwide acknowledge Alabama as the genre's most distinguished group. Alabama has more number one records than any band in music history - first in line in front of pop phenomenon, The Beatles. Alabama has sold more concert tickets than any other Country artist. They have been recognized with more than 150 industry awards and have accumulated seventeen platinum and multi-platinum certifications representing upward sales of 70 Million Units. Alabama is known for their commitment to their fans as much as for their musical accomplishments. Lead singer Randy Owen comments: "It's the hard working fans that have kept us on the road for over twenty-five years. The response to The American Farewell Tour has been so overwhelming. We've received e-mails and correspondence from all over the country asking us when we're going to be in their area, telling us 'roll-on'. It's been an emotional experience. Our fans are like loyal, faithful friends, and we want to return the same loyalty in person."
           The first leg of The American Farewell Tour included stops in 40 different markets. To date the tour has attracted an audience of over 400,000 with ticket sales in excess of $20 Million. Thirty shows have been added to the tour to include Atlantic City, NJ, Austin, TX, Biloxi, MS, Buffalo, NY, Charleston, SC, Oklahoma City, OK, Richmond, VA and Tallahassee, FL. The second leg of the tour commences February 7, 2004 in San Antonio, TX and continues through June 2004. (See schedule. Dates and locations subject to change.)
           Show-goers get their money's worth. The American Farewell Tour show is a 3-hour concert event during which Alabama performs a selection of songs from their collection of over 60 Top 10 radio releases including 42 of their No. 1 hits. The song list includes "Mountain Music," "Feels So Right, "Dixieland Delight," "Jukebox In My Mind," I'm In A Hurry (And Don't Know Why)," and "Roll On (Eighteen Wheeler)."

2003 CMA Awards Patrick Wall - - Posted November 7, 2003
           Spot who's left out! This is the list of CMA inductees thus far. With the CMA awards on TV this week, it is interesting to review the relevance of these. While a lot of my alltime favorites that are included (Bill Monroe, Ernest Tubb, Johnny Cash, Jim Reeves, Lefty Frizzell), others (Moon Mullican, Ralph Stanley/Stanley Brothers and, of course, Jerry Lee come to mind immediately) are left out for reasons I can't understand.
           For me, any mention of postwar country music should mention Jerry Lee as one of the top 10 stylists of that era. Taking the 1930s-1950s era into account, Moon and The Stanley Brothers should be in that top 10.
           Somehow, the CMA do not see this. While I admire a lot of the great producers mentioned here like Art Satherley (Bill Monroe, Cliff Bruner, Moon Mullican, Robert Johnson, etc.), Sam Phillips (Jerry Lee Lewis, Elvis Presley, Johnny Cash, etc.), Owen Bradley (Bill Monroe, Moon Mullican, Patsy Cline, Jimmie Martin, etc.), I fundamentally think the artists should come first - and then everyone else! Since it is obvious that so many country music stylists are STILL NOT inducted (and that includes our idol, Jerry Lee), they should be there before we get around to talking about the great producers, etc.
           On a positive note, the Johnny Cash tribute and the induction of Carl Smith (which was long overdue) was very welcome (although the latter as said belated).

JIMMIE RODGERS: Sept. 8, 1897 - May 26, 1932 (elected 1961)
FRED ROSE: Aug. 24, 1897 - Dec. 1, 1954 (elected 1961)
HANK WILLIAMS: Sept. 17, 1923 - Jan. 1,1953 (elected 1961)
ROY ACUFF: Sept. 15, 1903 - Nov. 23, 1992 (elected 1962)
TEX RITTER: Jan. 11, 1907 - Jan. 2, 1974 (elected 1964)
ERNEST TUBB: Feb. 9, 1914 - Sept. 6,1984 (elected 1965)
EDDY ARNOLD: May 15, 1918 (elected 1966)
JAMES R. DENNY: Feb. 28, 1911 - Aug. 27, 1963 (elected 1966)
GEORGE D. HAY: Nov. 9, 1895 - May 8, 1968 (elected 1966)
UNCLE DAVE MACON: Oct. 7, 1870 - Mar. 22, 1968 (elected 1966) RED FOLEY: June 17, 1910 - Sept. 19, 1968 (elected 1967)
J.L. (JOE) FRANK: Apr. 15, 1900 - May 4, 1952 (elected 1967)
JIM REEVES: Aug. 20, 1924 - July 31, 1964 (elected 1967)
STEPHEN H. SHOLES: Feb. 12, 1911 - Apr. 22, 1968 (elected 1967)
BOB WILLS: Mar. 6, 1905 - May 13, 1975 (elected 1968)
GENE AUTRY: Sept. 28, 1907 - Oct. 2, 1998 (elected 1969)
BILL MONROE: Sept. 13, 1911 - Sept. 9, 1996 (elected 1969)
           A.P. Carter: Dec. 15, 1891 - Nov. 7, 1960
           Maybelle Carter: May 10, 1909 - Oct. 23, 1978
           Sara Carter: July 21, 1899 - Jan. 8, 1979
ARTHUR EDWARD SATHERLEY: Oct. 19, 1889 - Feb. 10, 1986 (elected 1971)
JIMMIE H. DAVIS: Sept. 11, 1904 - Nov. 5, 2000 (elected 1972)
CHET ATKINS: June 20, 1924 - June 30, 2001 (elected 1973)
PATSY CLINE: Sept. 8, 1932 - Mar. 5, 1963 (elected 1973)
OWEN BRADLEY: Oct. 21, 1915 - Jan. 7, 1998 (elected 1974)
FRANK "PEE WEE" KING: Feb. 18, 1914 - March 7, 2000 (elected 1974)
MINNIE PEARL: Oct. 25, 1912 - March 4, 1996 (elected 1975)
PAUL COHEN: Nov. 10, 1908 - Apr. 1, 1971 (elected 1976)
KITTY WELLS: Aug. 30, 1919 (elected 1976)
MERLE TRAVIS: Nov. 29, 1917 - Oct. 20, 1983 (elected 1977)
GRANDPA JONES: Oct. 20, 1913 - Feb. 19, 1998 (elected 1978)
HANK SNOW: May 9, 1914 - Dec. 20, 1999 (elected 1979)
HUBERT LONG: Dec. 3, 1923 - Sept. 7, 1972 (elected 1979)
JOHNNY CASH: Feb. 26, 1932 - Sept. 12, 2003 (elected 1980)
CONNIE B. GAY: Aug. 22, 1914 - Dec. 4, 1989 (elected 1980)
           Hugh Farr: Dec. 6, 1903 - Mar. 17, 1980
           Karl Farr: Apr. 29, 1909 - Sept. 20, 1961
           Bob Nolan: Apr. 1, 1908 - June 15, 1980
           Lloyd Perryman: Jan. 29, 1917 - May 31, 1977
           Roy Rogers: Nov. 5, 1911 - July 6, 1998
           Tim Spencer: July 13, 1908 - Apr. 26, 1974
VERNON DALHART: Apr. 6, 1883 - Sept. 14, 1948 (elected 1981)
GRANT TURNER: May 17, 1912 - Oct. 19, 1991 (elected 1981)
LEFTY FRIZZELL: Mar. 31, 1928 - July 19, 1975 (elected 1982)
ROY HORTON: Nov. 5, 1914 - Sept. 23, 2003 (elected 1982)
MARTY ROBBINS: Sept. 26, 1925 - Dec. 8, 1982 (elected 1982)
LITTLE JIMMY DICKENS: Dec. 19, 1920 (elected 1983)
RALPH SYLVESTER PEER: May 22, 1892 - Jan. 19, 1960 (elected 1984)
FLOYD TILLMAN: Dec. 8, 1914 - Aug. 22, 2003 (elected 1984)
FLATT AND SCRUGGS: (elected 1985)
           Lester Flatt: June 19, 1914 - May 11, 1979
           Earl Scruggs: Jan. 6, 1924
BENJAMIN F. FORD: May 12, 1901 - June 20, 1986 (elected 1986)
WESLEY H. ROSE: Feb. 11, 1918 - April 26, 1990 (elected 1986)
ROD BRASFIELD: Aug. 22, 1910 - Sept. 12, 1958 (elected 1987)
LORETTA LYNN: Apr. 14, 1935 (elected 1988)
ROY ROGERS: Nov. 5, 1911 - July 6, 1998 (elected 1988)
JACK STAPP: Dec. 8, 1912 - Dec. 20, 1980 (elected 1989)
CLIFFIE STONE: Mar. 1, 1917 - Jan. 17, 1998 (elected 1989)
HANK THOMPSON: Sept. 3, 1925 (elected 1989)
TENNESSEE ERNIE FORD: Feb. 13, 1919 - Oct. 17, 1991 (elected 1990)
           Boudleaux: Feb. 13, 1920 - June 25, 1987
           Felice: Aug. 7, 1925 - Apr. 22, 2003
GEORGE JONES: Sept. 12, 1931 (elected 1992)
FRANCES WILLIAMS PRESTON: Aug. 24, 1934 (elected 1992)
WILLIE HUGH NELSON: Apr. 30, 1933 (elected 1993)
MERLE HAGGARD: Apr. 6, 1937 (elected 1994)
ROGER MILLER: Jan. 2, 1936 - Oct. 25, 1992 (elected 1995)
JO WALKER-MEADOR: Feb. 16, 1925 (elected 1995)
PATSY MONTANA: Oct. 30, 1908 - May 3, 1996 (elected 1996)
BUCK OWENS: Aug. 12, 1929 (elected 1996)
RAY PRICE: Jan. 12, 1926 (elected 1996)
HARLAN HOWARD: Sept. 9, 1927 - March 3, 2002 (elected 1997)
BRENDA LEE: Dec. 11, 1944 (elected 1997)
CINDY WALKER: July 20, 1918 (elected 1997)
GEORGE MORGAN: June 28, 1924 - July 7, 1975 (elected 1998)
ELVIS PRESLEY: Jan. 8, 1935 - August 16, 1977 (elected 1998)
BUD WENDELL: Aug. 17, 1927 (elected 1998)
TAMMY WYNETTE: May 5, 1942 - April 6, 1998 (elected 1998)
DOLLY PARTON: Jan. 19, 1946 (elected 1999)
CONWAY TWITTY: Sept. 1, 1933 - June 5, 1993 (elected 1999)
JOHNNY BOND: June 1, 1915 - June 12, 1978 (elected 1999)
FARON YOUNG: Feb. 25, 1932 - Dec. 10, 1996 (elected 2000)
CHARLEY PRIDE: March 18, 1938 (elected 2000)
BILL ANDERSON: November 1, 1937 (elected 2001)
THE DELMORE BROTHERS: (elected 2001)
           Alton Delmore - Dec. 25, 1908 - June 8, 1964
           Rabon Delmore - Dec. 3, 1916 - Dec. 4, 1952
THE EVERLY BROTHERS: (elected 2001)
           Don Everly - Feb. 1, 1937
           Phil Everly - Jan. 19, 1939
DON GIBSON: April 3, 1928 (elected 2001)
HOMER AND JETHRO: (elected 2001)
           Henry (Homer) Haynes - July 27, 1920 - Aug. 7, 1971
           Kenneth (Jethro) Burns - March 10, 1920 - Feb. 4, 1989
WAYLON JENNINGS: June 15, 1937 - Feb. 13, 2002 (elected 2001)
THE JORDANAIRES: (elected 2001)
           Hoyt Hawkins - March 31, 1927 - Oct. 23, 1982
           Neal Matthews, Jr. - Oct. 26, 1929 - April 21, 2000
           Gordon Stoker - Aug. 3, 1924
           Ray Walker - March 16, 1934
DON LAW: Feb. 24, 1902 - Dec. 20, 1982 (elected 2001)
THE LOUVIN BROTHERS: (elected 2001)
           Charlie Louvin - July 7, 1927
           Ira Louvin - April 21, 1924 - June 20, 1965
KEN NELSON: Jan. 19, 1911 (elected 2001)
SAM PHILLIPS: Jan. 5, 1923 - July 30, 2003 (elected 2001)
WEBB PIERCE: Aug. 8, 1921 - Feb. 24, 1991 (elected 2001)
BILL CARLISLE: Dec. 19, 1908 - March 12, 2003 (elected 2002)
PORTER WAGONER: Aug. 12, 1927 - (elected 2002)
FLOYD CRAMER: Oct. 27, 1933 - Dec. 31, 1997 (elected 2003)
CARL SMITH: March 15, 1927 - (elected 2003)

Daughter of June Carter Cash Found Dead
CLARKSVILLE, Tenn. - (Sat., Oct. 25, 2003) - The daughter of late country music singer June Carter Cash was found dead in a parked bus along with a Nashville bluegrass fiddle player, authorities said. Officials said Saturday that carbon monoxide from six propane or kerosene heaters on the bus may have killed the two and that an autopsy was planned. The bodies were found Friday afternoon.
           Ted Denny, spokesman for the Montgomery County Sheriff's Department, said Saturday that the deaths were "suspicious." He said emergency medical workers found drug paraphernalia, including needles and pipes, on the bus near the bodies. Investigators identified the victims as Rosey Nix Adams, who also was the 45-year-old stepdaughter of late singing legend Johnny Cash; and Jimmy Campbell, 40, a bluegrass fiddle player who performed and recorded in Nashville for more than a decade. Adams and her husband, Philip Adams, had recently sold a home in Montgomery County and were preparing to travel in the bus. They had parked the bus behind the house for repairs.
           Investigators said the bus may have been owned by the late bluegrass pioneer Bill Monroe. Emergency workers found memorabilia from Monroe and Johnny Cash on the bus, such as autographed pictures.
           Rosey Nix Adams, also known as Rosey Carter Adams, was the daughter of June Carter Cash and her second husband Richard "Rip" Nix. She was a songwriter and had pursued a performing career. Campbell was a member of The Sidemen, a band of Nashville session players, and had toured and recorded as leader of his own band.
           "The Cash and Carter families are shocked and deeply saddened by the untimely death of Rosey Carter Adams," family spokesman Kirt Webster said in a statement. "The family has suffered greatly this year by the successive passing of Rosey's mother, June Carter Cash, and her stepfather, Johnny Cash, in just over five months."
           Rosey Nix Adams' mother died in May, and Johnny Cash died last month.

Bellamy Brothers Lauching "Lifetime Career" Project
           NASHVILLE - Oct. 23rd, 2003 - Howard and David have had a collective career imprint as "The Bellamy Brothers" that has transcended time and all prevailing musical boundaries to be one of the most successful duos in the history of the music industry.
           With career sales approaching 60 million worldwide, what's next for the brotherhood of Bellamy? "Next is what will probably prove to be the most ambitious project of our career," noted David in a recent interview. "I guess you could say it would be an 'impossible dream project' if we weren't too old to know the meaning of the word 'impossible,'" added elder statesman Howard.
           The Bellamy's are in the beginning stages of re-cutting many of their greatest hits - hits forever ingrained in their career such as their first worldwide pop smash, "Let Your Love Flow," "If I Said You Have A Beautiful Body (Would You Hold It Against Me,") "Old Hippie," "Reggae Cowboy," "Sugar Daddy," "Redneck Girl," "Do You Love As Good As You Look," "For All The Wrong Reasons" - those just to mention a few signature songs in the process of being re-visited.
           The hook? This time around in the studio, Howard and David are inviting a few of their closest - and highest profile musical friends to help them with the recording process.
           First Bellamy classic to undergo new recorded life : Alan Jackson joined Howard and David on a circa 2003 version of their memorable hit - "Whistlin' Dixie." "It was a tall order - but we found the right man for the job," joked David in the studio with Jackson. With one down on track and many more to come, K.T. Oslin dropped over while the Bellamy's were recording in Nashville to add her unique - always provocative - vocal charms to "I'd Lie To You For Your Love." "You was so convincing on the vocal I almost believed you were telling me the truth," deadpanned Howard - eliciting laughs in the control room from the ever lovely K.T.
           With Alan Jackson and K.T. Oslin already "in the can" for the Bellamys' 'lifetime project' there's more to come. Howard and David will announce more top name guest artists from the rock, pop, country and R&B genres that are confirmed and being confirmed for future sessions. "More to come" would be an understatement! For media information on the Bellamy Brothers contact: Diana Henderson, 615-777-6995 x23.

Narvel Felts' Christmas Recordings Available - Click Here

Engelbert Humperdinck Releases First Gospel CD
           "Always Hear The Harmony: The Gospel Sessions", the first Gospel CD ever recorded by the legendary Engelbert Humperdinck, has been released by Greenhaw Records. "Always Hear The Harmony: The Gospel Sessions" is the newest addition to Engelbert's amazing catalog, and the album also features the gospel sounds of The Jordanaires, The Blackwood Brothers Quartet and The Light Crust Doughboys. During his career that spans more than 35 years, Engelbert has generated sales in excess of 130 million records including 64 Gold and 23 Platinum albums.
           "Always Hear The Harmony: The Gospel Sessions" includes classic and popular songs such as "The Old Rugged Cross", "What A Friend We Have In Jesus", "Nearer My God To Thee", "In The Sweet By and By" and "Amazing Grace". Three new songs, including the title track, "Always Hear The Harmony", and two wedding love songs, "Our Wedding Song" and "Sending Me You" complete the 12-song CD.
           Produced by Art Greenhaw, this marks the first collaboration between Humperdinck and Greenhaw. Greenhaw earned a Grammy for the 2002 period for Best Southern, Country or Bluegrass Gospel Album of the Year.
           Engelbert Humperdinck continues to tour globally, performing more than 175 sold out concerts every year. Songs from "Always Hear The Harmony: The Gospel Sessions" will be included in his concerts on selected stops throughout the coming months.

Gary Buck - Deceased
           Sadly, I must report that GARY BUCK has passed away, October 14th, 2003 (9:00pm Alberta time) at age 63. He died of cancer, after being briefly hospitalized over the Thanksgiving weekend, in Didsbury, Alberta.
           Gary was a true pioneer of Canadian country music. During his 40-plus years in the music industry, he amassed extensive credits as a recording artist, producer, songwriter, publisher and record label head, and as an industry executive in Canada and the USA. He will also be remembered for founding and presiding over the Canadian Country Music Hall of Fame.
           Gary Buck is survived by his wife Deb and son Matthew in Didsbury, and son Raymond and daughters Trudy, Kailie and Christine, who make their home in Ontario.
          Larry Delaney

Texas Playboys Pianist Dies
           Tulsa World - 10/8/2003 - Clarence B. Cagle, legendary pianist for the Texas Playboys, died Sunday. He was 83. Cagle, born April 19, 1920, in Oklahoma City, began playing violin and banjo at house parties at age 9. In the early 1930s, he began playing in clubs in Oklahoma City. During his five or so years playing at the Moonlight Gardens in Oklahoma City, he became friends with legendary jazz musician Charlie Christian, who was playing at the club next door.
           In 1938, Cagle moved on to Coffeyville, Kan., where he played with Herb Goddard's Oklahoma Wanderers. By then he'd switched to playing the piano, the instrument that would make him famous. While in Coffeyville, he met his wife, Kathrean. In 1943, after legendary Texas swing musician Bob Wills returned from his stint in the military, Cagle came to Tulsa to audition for him. He got the job and performed with the Texas Playboys until Wills left for Hollywood to make a series of Western films.
           Cagle stayed in Tulsa with Wills' brother, Johnnie Lee Wills. It was during his time as a Texas Playboy that Cagle's well-known "Boogie Woogie Highball" was developed. He played with Johnnie Lee Wills for the next 17 years.
           When Cagle left the band in the mid-'60s, he joined forces with Leon McAuliffe. That musical pairing lasted 19 years. Later, Cagle and his wife ran a music store for McAuliffe in Rogers, Arkansas. The couple returned to Tulsa in 1982. He continued to play with Johnnie Lee Wills and McAuliffe over the next several years, filling in as pianist for the Texas Playboys. Cagle was admitted to the Western Swing Hall of Fame in Sacramento, Calif., in 1988. He officially retired from music in 1999.

Lightcrust Doughboys Present "State Fair Cowboy Swing"
           Coinciding with the fabulous Texas State Fair, the equally fabulous Light Crust Doughboys will appear in concert at the Pocket Sandwich Theatre in "State Fair Cowboy Swing," on Monday, October 13, at 7:30. The Doughboys, who perform regularly at the Pocket Sandwich Theatre (as well as at numerous other venues all over the state), are the longest continually performing Western Swing group in America. Winners of a 2003 Grammy for "We Called Him Mr. Gospel Music: The James Blackwood Tribute Album," they were also named one of the "Best Of Big D" in the August issue of D Magazine. Generally acknowledged as the originators of Western Swing, their many other honors include election to the Texas Cowboys Music Hall of Fame and two nominations for the Dove Award, gospel music¹s most prestigious award. Their many popular album releases include "God Is Love: The Gospel Sessions," "Red River Valley Memories: The Texas Swing Sessions," "They Gave The World A Smile," "The Great Gospel Hit Parade," "Folk And Blues Of The American Southwest," and "Adventure In Country Swing."
           This concert will showcase the Doughboys¹ Western Swing standards, with Jerry Elliott, Bill Simmons, John Walden, Jim Baker, and Art Greenhaw. As usual, the Doughboys Brass and Reed Ensemble will be on hand to provide a big-band sound to the Doughboys¹ Western Swing.
           The theatre will open for "State Fair Cowboy Swing" at 6:30 on Monday, October 13, and the show will begin at 7:30. Optional food and beverage service will be available. Tickets (show only) are $14.00. Special "meal deal" tickets (show, choice of entree, soft drink and tax) are available for $19.00.
           The Pocket Sandwich Theatre is located at 5400 East Mockingbird, Suite 119, Mockingbird Central Plaza, one block east of Central Expressway. For reservations or information, 214-821-1860.

Wesley Tuttle Passed Away Sept. 29th.
           Wesley Tuttle introduced "Detour" on Capital Records in 1946, but somehow the past 50 years or more Capitol Records (which is now EMI) has forgotten about one of it's early recording artists. He was is a true western gentleman singer who has had numerous Country/Western hit records in the late 1940's and 1950's. Wesley Tuttle was born December 30, 1917 in Lamar, Colorado. He was an only child. Like most children in the 1920's and 1930's, he listened to the radio. He and his Mom and Dad moved to San Fernando, California when Wesley was still very young. His early childhood was very normal growing up in the San Fernando Valley area. Country/Western Music was being played over the radio waves and Wesley was listening to about every Country/Western music program there was. His first favorite singing star was the Blue Yodeler, Jimmie Rogers. Wesley would spend hours imitating Rogers vocal and yodeling style. At the age of seven years old Wesley recieved a ukulele. He practiced and practiced. Later he would get a guitar and became a self taught guitar picker. At the age of 13, Wesley met Stuart Hamblin. Hamblin encouraged Wesley's vocal style and guitar playing. Wesley started playing guitar and singing with Hamblin's group. After high school graduation in San Fernando, Wesley went to work with Hamblin's group, The Beverly Hillbillies and for a short while was an alternate member with the legendary western group, The Sons of the Pioneers. Wesley proved a valuable singer with these various singing groups. He was much in demand with his tenor voice. Wesley learned all of the harmony parts. He played good guitar and was an exceptional bass guitar player. Wesley would soon play with local groups in the San Fernando Valley area such as Jack & His Texas Outlaws and Jimmy LeFevre. It was during 1935 that Wesley first met Lloyd Perryman. Perryman later in 1936 became a long time member of The Sons of the Pioneers. In 1939, Wesley went to Cincinnati and performed on radio station WLW. This was a clear channel station that could be heard throughout the entire eastern United States at night. Wesley performed on the popular Boon County Jamboree until 1941. While living in Cincinnati, he became aquainted with Merle Travis and Grandpa Jones. Wesley decided to move back to the Hollywood, CA area to persue his music. He got aquainted with Tex Ritter, Gene Autry, Roy Rogers, Jimmy Wakely and Johnny Bond. He started appearing in western cowboy movies as a singer. He made movies with Johnny Mack Brown, Tex Ritter, Russell Hayden and Jimmy Wakely. It was during the mid 1940's that Wesley signed with Capitol Records. He was one of the earlier singers signed to this label. Wesley toured with Tex Ritter during 1945. Their first stop was Nashville, TN. They had five touring cars on this tour. "Cannonball" Dub Taylor, Arkansas Slim Andrews, Paul Stambaugh, Buddy Ray, June Widner, Charlie and Margie Linville all traveled together on this tour. Wesley would sing his big hit "With Tears In My Eyes". This was his first Number One hit for Capitol Records in 1945. It was #1 in Billboard Magazine for four weeks In the late 1940's, Wesley Tuttle started making guest appearences on the World Famous Grand Ole Opry. He introduced his next big hit recording "detour". This was a hit for him two different times. It is still a great sounding song. Later Wesley became music director for the famous ABC TV series, Town Hall Party. This was to be a major part of Wesley and Marilyn Tuttle's career. This was a popular western-cowboy-country music TV series that originated from Compton, CA. Many of the members of the Town Hall Party were already living in the San Fernando Valley and Los Angeles area. Many were already established stars. Among the many members were Fiddlin' Kate (Margie Warren), Tex Ritter, Freddie Hart, Johnny Bond, Joe and Roselee Maphis, Larry & Lorrie Collins and the famous Merle Travis.
           After the Town Hall Party, Wesley was the musical director for Sacred Records from 1957-1970. He and Marilyn recorded nine albums between them. Those are highly collectible by western and gospel music fans. Courtesy: Buffalo Rick Galeener

Rosalie Allen R.I.P.: Congestive Heart Failure
           September 24, 2003 - One of the first wave of female country stars, Rosalie Allen recorded several hits during the late '40s as a singing cowgirl and yodeler in the Patsy Montana tradition. Born Julie Marlene Bedra on June 27, 1924, she grew up in a large, poor Pennsylvania family. Inspired by the singing cowboys of the '30s, she taught herself to sing and play guitar, and began working on the radio in Wilkes-Barre, PA. She moved to New York in the early '40s, and sang with the Swing Billies and also with Zeke Manners, where she met her future duet partner, Elton Britt. Allen's first hit came in 1946 with RCA Victor; the update of Patsy Montana's "I Want to Be a Cowboy's Sweetheart" hit number five and was later trumped on the country charts by its B-side, "Guitar Polka (Old Monterey)," which reached number three.
           During the late '40s, Allen became quite famous in New York as a major promoter of country music. She hosted a TV show in New York as well as the WOV radio program Prairie Stars, and her writing appeared in columns for National Jamboree and Country Sound Roundup. Her Rosalie Allen Hillbilly Music Center in New York was the first specifically country record store in the nation.
           Allen's final two chart hits paired her with Elton Britt, the yodeler famous in the mid-'40s for "There's a Star-Spangled Banner Waving Somewhere." Their first single, "Beyond the Sunset," hit number seven in 1950; it was followed closely by the number three "Quicksilver." The duo also recorded an album for Waldorf Records in the mid-'50s -- now released as Starring Elton Britt and Rosalie Allen on the Grand Award label. Also, two albums of Allen's solo recordings are available as German imports. -Courtesy, John Bush, All Music Guide

From Howard Volks:
           September 19, 2003 - Country ole timer Rosalie Allan is not doing so good. Get well cards are appreciated:
Rosale Allen
c/o Berkley Valley Convelesance Center
6600 Sepulveda Blvd., Room 126B
Van Nuys, CA 91411
           This country DJ in Ireland needs records from the USA - country, bluegrass ans gospel acts:
Mr. John Buckley
103 Meadowlands "Oak Park"
Tralee Co., Kerry, Ireland

Robert James "Buddy" Ray Gone
           Robert James "Buddy" Ray, 83, a legendary jazz violinist and pioneer of Western swing music who had lived in Waskom for the past five years, died Wednesday, Sept. 3, 2003, after a long illness. Memorial service: 2 p.m. Saturday at the First Lutheran Church of Shreveport, La. There will be a reception following the service.
           Buddy Ray was born Nov. 30, 1919, in Waco. He enjoyed a professional music career that spanned 60 years, during which he played with such names as Bob Wills, Ray Price, Nat King Cole, Sammi Smith, Jimmy Wakely and countless others. During a 25-year stint on the West Coast beginning in 1944, he also appeared, usually as a musician, in a number of films, including the Benny Goodman Story, Giant, A Star is Born, Brigadoon and Jailhouse Rock with Elvis Presley.
           Buddy was reared in Waco, where he began his career with his mother, Lucille Ray's Moonglow Orchestra in the mid 1930s. A formally trained violinist, he began to gravitate toward jazz and country music about 1937, when he joined the early Houston-based string swing band, the Modern Mountaineers, with whom he traveled to Shreveport, La., in the summer of '37. While with the group, he made the first of hundreds of recordings. By 1940, Buddy was one of the top young fiddlers in Texas, appearing with pioneering Western swing groups like the Texas Wanderers and the Village Boys.
           Buddy was an early proponent of the electric violin and was among the first to record with the instrument. In addition to his fiddling, he made numerous recordings as a vocalist during this period and composed a number of songs, the most famous probably being the modernistic swing instrumental Tulsa Twist, which was recorded by Dickie McBride and His Village Boys for Decca Records in 1941. It has since been reissed on a number of occasions. His ballad "I Don't Want Anyone But You" was also recorded several times by other artists.
           In late 1943, Buddy relocated to California, where he worked with most of the top western bands of the day, such names as Bob Wills and His Texas Playboys, T. Texas Tyler and his Oklahoma Melody Boys, Merl Lindsay's Oklahoma Night Riders, Jimmy Wakely, Merle Travis and many others. He continued to record and during this period also began the move career detailed above. As rock'n'roll and television altered tastes and entertainment patterns, Ray took up tenor saxophone as a second instrument. In the 1950s, he began a close friendship with the famed black jazz violinist Stuff Smith, who had been Ray's main inspiration in his early professional career.
           In 1970, he returned to Texas, though he spent several years on the road with Ray Price and Sammi Smith before settling in Fort Worth. He remained in the Fort Worth area for the next quarter-century, playing with local groups. In 1994, he joined Fort Worth's jazz-blues group, The Braton and Price Swingmasters Revue, with whom he made his final recordings, issued recently on Fort Worth's Aristokraft label. He remained with the group until his retirement to Waskom in 1998.
           Buddy married his wife, Peggy, in 1975. A writer and philosopher in addition to his musical career, Buddy was a devout Christian and a member of First Lutheran Church in Shreveport, La.
           Survivors: Wife of 27 years, Peggy; daughter, Kim Johnson of Waskom; beloved grandson, Eric Johnson of Waskom; brother, Billy Ray of West; and sister, Carol Leidig of Waco. Published in the Star-Telegram on 9/5/2003.

R.I.P. Jimmy Rivers
Sept. 5, 2003 - "Word has been received that Hall of Fame member Jimmy Rivers has passed away. He had been ill for some time with cancer and heart problems. While his roots were in Western Swing, Jimmy was known worldwide as a jazz and blues guitarist. Our condolences go to his family, friends and fans. In keeping with his personal wishes, Jimmy's funeral will be a private service on September 12th with family and a very few folks close to the family in attendance.
           Although Jimmy Rivers music and talent was legendary worldwide and he once was described by Billboard Magazine as the 3rd top jazz musician in the world, he was a very private man who wished to be remembered as he was on the bandstand by his fans and his friends.
           "Jimmy spoke with me at length a few weeks before his death and gave permission for the Society to hold a tribute for him. The Western Swing Society will host a special Sunday afternoon dance and potluck on Sunday, September 28, 2003 starting at 1p.m. at the Country Club Lanes upstairs ballroom, located at 2600 Watt Ave in Sacramento, CA to remember and pay tribute to Jimmy Rivers.
           "Truitt Cunningham will front a band featuring musicians that worked with Jimmy over the years. An open jam session will follow. Red Gillian will emcee and speak about Jimmy's life and career. We welcome shared stories and memories as wecelebrate Jimmy Rivers' life, friendships, favorite memories and legendary music career.
           "There will be no charge at the door for this special event. We encourage everyone to come, bring a food dish to share along with their music instrument and their dancing shoes."
-Steve Hathaway, San Jose, California

Pigeon Forge, TN Sat., Nov. 8th
To each of you who are in the Pigeon Forge, Tn. area and surrounding states, please add the following info to your travel to see shows date book:
November 8, 2003-SATURDAY
PIGEON FORGE, TN. TICKETS - PH. 866-430-8422
Spend a day with the following Legends of Country Music and the Grand Ole Opry:

An Evening wuth Larry Gatlin and the Gatlin Brothers
Have you ever seen, or remember seeing, a real first class entertainer - someone who shows you many faces of the entertainment sphere in one single setting - an entertainer who can completely captivate any audience with effortless command from start to finish - an entertainer who's quick witted humor grips the very core of your laughter with a logical brilliancy that can only be found on the other side of "crazy," somewhere deep down in the heart of "been there, done that," Texas - an entertainer who's voice is still perfectly unaffected by the wear and tear of a 40 year star-studded career, not to mention three vocal surgeries completed, and sings with soul that far exceeds his religious nature - quite simply, have you ever seen a man who's live performance is the quintessential example of "genuine showmanship?" No? Well, then you haven't seen Larry Gatlin.
           "An Evening with Larry Gatlin and The Gatlin Brothers" is the first DVD release of a two-part series available only through Brought to you by Intersound/Magnet, this exclusive live performance footage is among some of the very first recorded since Larry Gatlin and the Gatlin Brothers took a break from their ten-year hiatus and reunited for a select city tour earlier this year. This "Homecoming" performance, recorded on country music's original "granddaddy" stage in Nashville, Tennessee, reveals the unmistakable sound of the three Grammy award-winning brothers who brought the music world songs like "All The Gold In California," "Broken Lady," "Houston," "Statues Without Hearts," and who can forget "I've Done Enough Dyin' Today." If you missed the one-time television debut of "An Evening with Larry Gatlin and The Gatlin Brothers" on GAC (Great American Country) that aired earlier this month then make sure to log on to the website. This special edition can be yours for $14.98 plus $4.00 shipping and handling. The second part of the series will bring you Larry, Rudy, and Steve's interpretation of a "family Christmas," acclaimed for their yuletide antics, their renditions of Christmas classics and their incredible gift of the Gospel flavor. "Christmastime with Larry Gatlin and The Gatlin Brothers" will be released on October 14, 2003.
           This special collection will not only make the perfect gift, but if you yourself are an avid music lover - here is a state of the art lesson in "music 101." This is vintage "Gatlin" and it shows beyond a shadow of a doubt that they are still on top of their game.

Mac Magaha R.I.P.
           Mac Magaha, fiddle player for Don Reno and Red Smiley's Tennessee Cut- Ups, died Friday (August 15, 2003) at the age of 74, after a bout with pneumonia. Magaha, known for his fiddling prowess, animated stage presence and good humor, joined Reno & Smiley in the early 50's, recording with them beginning in 1954. In the mid 1960's he joined the band of Porter Wagonner, and later had his own stage show at the Opryland theme park. His funeral will be held Monday in Nashville. His shoes cannot be filled, but the happiness he wrought lives on.

Patsy Cline's Hits Re-Mastered
The best-selling album in country music history, "Patsy Cline's Greatest Hits," is being digitally re-mastered and re-released. The album will hit stores with a new booklet Sept. 9, the same day a Patsy Cline tribute album is due out.
           "Remembering Patsy Cline," duplicates the 12-tracks on greatest hits with performances by contemporary stars Norah Jones (news), Michelle Branch (news), Amy Grant, Martina McBride, k.d. lang, Lee Ann Womack (news), Terri Clark (news), Natalie Cole (news) and others.
           As of Aug. 2, "Patsy Cline's Greatest Hits" has spent a total of 790 non-consecutive weeks on Billboard's country charts. When the Top Country Catalog Albums chart debuted in 1988, the album was at the top, and remained there longer than any release on any chart in history. She never toured to support the album. It was released four years after a fatal plane crash in 1963.

Redd Stewart R.I.P.
Henry Redd Stewart, 80, died Saturday at Baptist Hospital East. A native of Ashland City, TN, he was a US Army veteran of World War II. He was a singer/songwriter and on the Grand Ole Opry for many years as a member of Pee Wee King's Golden West Cowboys. He was a writer of the hit songs Tennessee Waltz, Slow Poke, Bonaparte's Retreat and You Belong to Me. He received many awards in country music, including two gold records. He was a member of Nashville Songwriters Foundation Hall of Fame and Evangel World Prayer Center. He was preceded in death by his wife, the former Darlene I. Collins; sister, Juanita Cook; and brothers, Alvin and Gene Stewart. He is survived by his daughter, Lydia (Jim) Marrow of Campbellsburg, KY; sons, Henry Redd "Colonel" Stewart Jr. of Eminence, KY, and Billy Ray (Sharon) Stewart of Norfolk, VA; sister, Mary Helen Beard; brothers, Eury "Slim" (Evelyn) Stewart of Georgia, Bill (Helen) Stewart of Mt. Washington and Harold (Ann) Stewart. An online guest register may be signed at www. -- Published in The Courier-Journal on 8/4/2003.

Classic Country Music is Still Alive and Well
At the Music Mill Dance Hall

           Contact: Gary Scott (270) 437-4283 (270) 753-1017 email: - Just north of Murray, Kentucky between Highways 641 and 1824, (Radio Road for the locals), sits a dance hall that looks like it was plucked out of Dallas and plopped down in Dexter. It's big, rustic and down home with plenty of parking out front. Inside, there's a large, wooden dance floor, a big bandstand and lots of seating. Over the chatter of the crowd, and the dancers’ shuffling feet, you hear the sounds of fiddle, guitar and piano, and lyrics from the golden age of country music.
           The Music Mill is a family run and family oriented establishment with all the look and feel of a Texas roadhouse. Inside, it’s dimly lit with just enough smoke in the air to tell you that you’re entering a honky-tonk. The Music Mill is a place where friendly folks from all over the 4-Rivers Region gather every Thursday, Friday and Saturday night to listen and dance to the classic country/western sounds of Mudhole Slim and the Shuffle Kings.  According to many of the regulars, the Shuffle Kings lay down a beat that you can really dance to. And, they play all of the songs these country music fans love to hear.
           Arliss Scott, a.k.a. "Mudhole Slim," is the band's lead guitar player. Scott is a 40-year country music veteran with experience on the Opry, television, recording sessions and too many miles on the road. He says all of the members of the Shuffle Kings are totally committed to performing nothing but classic country and western swing music.
           "You won't hear any Shania Twain or Kenny Chesney at the Music Mill. That’s not country. I'm really not sure what that is. What you will hear is plenty of Merle Haggard, Buck Owens, Ray Price, Bob Wills, Hank Thompson, Patsy Cline, Loretta Lynn, Willie Nelson and many others - all of the good stuff. "
           Gary Scott, Mudhole Slim's son, is the band's drummer and one of the vocalists. He and his father have worked in dozens of bands together over the past 20 years. "Our mission at the Music Mill is to preserve and perform Classic Country music, and to hold in reverence those who started the tradition. And, to provide a place where discerning adults and their families can come listen, dance and downright have fun!"
           In a world where music and entertainment is all too often determined by the marketplace and demographic studies, the Shuffle Kings predict that the Music Mill will succeed largely because they are sticking to their guns and doing what they love to do, and offering folks something they can't find just anywhere. "Our goal is honesty, consistency, quality and dependability. We guarantee that each and every time somebody walks through the front door they’ll know exactly what they're going to get and when they can get it. We're taking a simple and honest approach to something that we're all just crazy about."
           Mudhole Slim and the Shuffle Kings is not a show band. You won't find any of these guys dressed in sequins, cowboy hats or over-sized belt buckles. Basically, the Shuffle Kings are a group of average looking guys who do all of their talking with their music. And don't be fooled, this is not a musical trip back in time for the band. Gary Scott says emphatically that playing classic country music is no exercise in nostalgia for the Shuffle Kings. For him and the rest of the band, there's no such thing as old country music - just good country music.
           "There are still plenty of people, young and old alike, who are craving to hear classic country just like we do. Despite the impression you might get from pop-culture, classic country music is still alive and well; you just have to work a little harder to find it. We’re all very passionate about playing classic country music. And, the people who come to listen and dance love it just as much as we do. That's why the dance floor is packed during every song."
           On any given dance night, folks start showing up a couple of hours before the band starts. The regulars make the rounds, welcoming newcomers and catching up with the other dancers. When the band takes a break, folks gather on the large wooden front porch to cool off and have a smoke. Scott says the Music Mill is much more than a dance hall and place for him and the band to do what they love. He sees it almost as a community service.
           "The crowd here is just like family. Folks celebrate birthdays here. At least a half-dozen couples have met here and gotten married. Some have already celebrated or are approaching their first anniversary. They tell us all the time how truly grateful they are to have a place like the Music Mill to come to. You honestly feel like you’re a part of something bigger than the music and the dancing."
           Mudhole Slim and the Shuffle Kings is a 6-piece classic country/western band consisting of fiddle, guitar, piano, bass, rhythm guitar, drums and lots of vocals. The band includes: Arliss, Larry and Gary Scott all of Murray, Speedy Wyatt of Benton, Roger Black of Goreville, IL and Danny Conger of Paris, TN.
           The Shuffle Kings can be heard every Thursday, Friday and Saturday night from 7:00 to 11:00 at the Music Mill at 4311 Radio Road in Dexter, Kentucky. Admission is 5 dollars at the door.

Worth a Click ...
Loretta Lynn Interview

Rick Ralston - Gone But Not Forgotten
On June 3, 2003 country music is grieving the loss of a great man and a true and loving friend to many, Rick Ralston. Rick was a board member of the Country Legends Association as well as the CLA Gazzette news editor. He took the load off of many shoulders by taking on many different duties in his quest to save traditional country music. He will be greatly missed by President, Frank Dell as Rick was not only his good and trusted friend, he was his right hand man. Rick was also manager to MKOC Official artist, Joe Berry and in partnership with Col. Robert Morris, also of MKOC, and Joe Berry in "Original Urban Legends".br>            Rick had been suffering from complications of diabetes and had spent the better part of 2 months in and out of the>            We are all suffering from his loss and we thank all of you who prayed for him during the past months. He is with God now and we are left to struggle on without his kindness, laughter, compassion and passion for the music and for all those he loved. I personally will miss my dear friend and my heart goes out to his wife, Lois and Ralston family members and friends. A bell must have rung because I know of one angel in heaven right now getting his wings. You will be sorely missed, my friend, but I know you're in God's keeping now and will never have to suffer again ... that is left for those of us who mourn your loss. -Marli

First Annual Merle Haggard UPO Music Fest
Get abducted at Merle Haggard's First Annual UFO Music Fest! It's official, country music legend Merle Haggard will be appearing in concert with special guests Marty Stuart and Pam Tillis at the Bob Crosby Arena at the Eastern New Mexico State Grounds in Roswell, NM on Saturday, July 5 at 8 p.m. Tickets for Merle Haggard with special guests Marty Stuart and Pam Tillis are available now online or by phone.
           Tickets are now available online at or can be charged by phone at 1-800-470-5361 (M-F 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. MST), and are available at the Eastern New Mexico State Fair Office, Roswell Chamber of Commerce, Roswell Livestock & Farm Supply and Roswell Toyota/Honda. Tickets will be available on the day of the show at the Rodeo Arena Box Office. Tickets are $25 in advance and $30 on the day of the show.

Trisha Walker Celebrates 25 Years in Nashville
Nashville, TN -- Trisha Walker was born in Singapore and grew up on the island of Cyprus in the Mediterranean before moving to England at the age of eleven. The daughter of a British army major, Trisha was used to moving around and therefore always loved to travel.
           June is a very special month for Trisha. Her parents still live in England and her father celebrates his 85th birthday June 21st.
           It was also 25 years ago June 1st 1978 when Trisha Walker arrived in Nashville directly from England with a suitcase of summer clothes, $500 and no job. She had resigned after four years of working with the promoter of the Wembley country music festivals - her introduction to country music.
           Jo Walker-Meador, former Executive Director of the Country Music Association and still one of Trisha's closest friends today, took her under her wing, gave her a backstage pass to Fan Fair (then held at the Municipal Auditorium!) so Trisha could meet people. Her first job was with a film company in the UA Tower run by George Deaton (father of Robert Deaton - Deaton/Flanagan) but the company got into trouble and sadly the film was never released. Trisha was then invited to return to her former employer from England, (whose office was ironically also in the UA tower at that time so knew where to find her!) Trisha was his USA representative for five more years but as an independent contractor this time, working from home in Nashville. In 1983, she resigned her position for good.
           Trisha was unemployed for three months. She had no idea what she was going to do now and had big dreams for further expanding country music internationally. Her break came when Tony Conway at Buddy Lee Attractions contacted her, and they became her first USA client for whom she handled press, PR, radio, television and international. "I loved working with Buddy Lee and Tony Conway. Many of the staff from back then are still there today and Tony and I continue to do business together. I will be forever grateful for them taking a chance on me as I knew nothing about the way American companies did business and had to learn from scratch. However, I had wonderful teachers in both of them."
           Trisha's clients then expanded to include George Strait as his only in-house publicist and international representative for two years, plus for five years Trisha also booked the guests on the Charlie Douglas show on WSM and produced the big two-night Superstar Spectaculars during Fan Fair to help raise money for the Opry Trust Fund. The first night Trisha put on as many as 24 acts in four hours using a house band!
           By now, many overseas festivals - some established, some new, were also contacting Trisha....... it was the 80's - country music was growing overseas and Trisha became known in Nashville as one of the pioneers of the international movement.
           For five years, Trisha also handled the talent for a New Zealand TV show - sending to NZ six artists per series, twice a year, which was eventually also aired on a (then,) very new TNN.
           Another client was the giant Jim Halsey Company who had just moved to Nashville. Trisha says "Jim Halsey and Terry Cline were wonderful people - also very good to me and it was a pity that the company eventually closed its doors."
           Then came the 90's and enter Bob Saporiti, International Marketing Director at Warner Bros. Bob was the first label executive to support Trisha's efforts internationally. Together they broke new ground with a touring package of Little Texas, Mark O'Connor and Jim Lauderdale - all supported by the label. Bob and Trisha were on numerous industry panels, preaching the international gospel in Nashville, encouraging new acts to tour internationally while also building a U.S. career. Other labels then began hiring international representatives at their companies and Trisha started to work with them too, sometimes assisting with international budgets for tour and festival appearances.
           Together with Lou Robin, Johnny Cash's manager, Trisha also organised and produced European tours for Johnny Cash and the Carter Family, as well as arranging festival appearances. Trisha says "The recent passing of June Carter Cash made me realise just how important this work was back then. I am so very proud to have been associated with Johnny, June and the Carter Family. These wonderful people touched so many lives and brought happiness to so many people."
           In 1996 Trisha organised and produced an unprecedented package tour of four artists in six countries titled the Rock'n Country Tour which comprised Travis Tritt, Charlie Daniels, Confederate Railroad and Victoria Shaw. The idea was to showcase some of the new talent emerging on the country scene (with the exception of Charlie of course!)
           Trisha was also the international tour representative for Emmylou Harris and the Nash Ramblers for five years - sometimes doing two international tours per year.
           Trisha also produced two package tours of Brasil per year. It was new and unchartered territory but the people loved the music. However, due to the economy in Brasil, the promoter needed sponsors and Skol Beer was ideal - this lasted for 3 years.
           Also in the mid-90's, Trisha was approached to work as Nashville Consultant for MCA International - working directly for the worldwide head of the label's international division (all formats) - Stuart Watson, which she did for three and a half years. Her main task was to break Trisha Yearwood internationally, which she did through tours, press, promotion and sequencing albums for international release. Trisha also organised Yearwood's first visit to Australia and arranged for the famous duet with Australian superstar Lee Kernaghan, the proceeds of which went to benefit the farmers who were undergoing extreme hardship at the time.
           Trisha was also the first to take the Mavericks to Europe and also arranged a tour of Brasil. It was during the first trip with The Mavericks to Switzerland that Trisha met Rusty Cunningham - then tour manager/house sound engineer for the band. Less than a month later, they were married - both for the first time. On June 15th, they celebrate their 10th wedding anniversary!!!
           In 1996 Watson suddenly resigned from MCA International - a big shock but Trisha was kept on to complete her current project for the label - the New American Music Tour of 12 European countries with Emmylou Harris, Trisha Yearwood and Marty Stuart.
           Fifteen years ago, Marcel Bach from Switzerland approached Trisha about doing a festival in the ritzy ski resort of Gstaad, which she still produces and represents. Today the event is now considered the most prestigious of its kind anywhere in the world and Marcel Bach has received the "International Promoter of the Year" award from the Country Music Association on two occasions, most recently just last year.
           For twelve years Trisha has also represented the Country Rendez-Vous festival in Craponne-Sur-Arzon France, working with Georges Carrier, plus the Country Picinic Festival in Mragowo, Poland, working with Korneliusz Pacuda.
           The list of artists Trisha has worked with reads like a who's who, - over 250 artists and their entourages with many "firsts", such as Reba McEntire...."I love "firsts" says Trisha. "That, to me, is the biggest challenge and nothing gives me greater satisfaction than to see the audience on its feet screaming for more at the end of a performance when they have never seen the act before."
           Trisha toured Rodney Crowell and Roseanne Cash together when they were still married - their only tour together either side of the Atlantic. Trisha produced the only tour of Tammy Wynette and George Jones together when they reunited before Tammy's untimely death. Trisha also produced the only European tour (so far) for Billy Ray Cyrus. She has toured the Nitty Gritty Dirt Band, Buck Owens, the Bellamy Brothers, Kathy Mattea, Asleep at the Wheel, Mark Chesnutt and many, many others too numerous to mention. Trisha also took acts to former Czechoslovakia, where hardly anyone spoke English and whilst still under Russian rule. Trisha has worked with legends and new-comers. She says "I love helping the new-comers - it's a real, but enjoyable, challenge. If I believe in someone, I will go to the ends of the earth to try and help them - it's difficult without label support but that's where the festivals come in to help with budgets and after this many years, they trust my judgement when I tell them a certain act is one for the future."
           Likewise Trisha has helped acts who record in Nashville from overseas - for example setting up duets for them with some of Nashville's greatest acts.
           Trisha continues "For the most part all the tours and festival appearances I have done were without label support, which made it really difficult. Looking back it was amazing really. We had to budget, budget. budget to make everything work, but somehow it always did through teamwork with the managers and the artists who believe in the international market. Also, I must confess I was never in this business for the money - it was my belief in the music that kept me going....still does..... and the fact that I knew there was an audience was out there in all these European countries, just waiting to hear it. Therefore on many occasions I would make personal sacrifices just so the tours could happen."
           Trisha has experienced the best of times and the worst of times during her 25 years in Nashville. For example, her business literally shut down during the 90's Gulf War. She recalls "It was one of the very few times that I had to ask my parents for money to help me out!!!"
           However she says "I don't like to give up on something I believe in. I staunchly remain 'old school' - believe in honesty and integrity and in helping people. I love helping people. However, I do miss the good old days when everyone used to gather in one place for drinks after work - where you could walk into industry hang-outs and see everyone - where people socialised all the time and there was very little back-stabbing. The industry back then was about the music and not about the money."
           She continues: "Today there are the really, really big, big superstars who want nothing to do with Europe (with very few exceptions) and no new stars being created for long term careers. This makes for problems with the international business and heartache for the fans who never get to see them. The business has changed so much during my 25 years in Nashville. However, my friends back then are still my friends today and I cherish and treasure each and every one of them. I wish I could name them all but they know who they are and they are very dear to my heart."
           Trisha has been honoured with many awards for her international efforts and remains the only foreigner and a woman with her own business specializing in one field. January 5th 1989 is "Trisha Walker Day" in the Nashville history books. Trisha is an honorary citizen of the State of Tennessee and has a key to the city. Trisha has been honoured by the CMA on many occasions - the most treasured award being the receipient of the FIRST "Jo Walker-Meador International Achievement Award" in 1994 and has certificates of merit from two Tennessee Governors and two Nashville Mayors. Trisha is also a graduate of Leadership Music. Trisha has helped produced many international TV specials for TNN and one for Showtime. The Gstaad Festival, Switzerland was also aired on CMT.
           Trisha has endless road stories but lives by the "code of the road " i.e. you don't tell!!!! If I were to tell everything I know and have seen, I would have been run out of Nashville years ago." she laughs.
           Trisha can be reached at: Tel: 615-269-0856 FAX: 615-297-5280

Juice Newton Sings Own Patriotic Song
A singer known for her love songs, like "The Sweetest Thing (I've Ever Known Is Loving You)," has a new single out that focuses on world events. Juice Newton said that not every patriotic song has to focus on drum-pounding or "big boots." Her song "Keepers Of The Peace" is more about what's going on.
           "It is patriotic. And we are here, and we are doing a good job. But there is something else a little bit more to it than just drum pounding," Newton said. "It is different but I think if you have any sensibilities, social awareness, then you have some sense of what's going on. And you should have an idea on how to make that happen. "It's amazing that the world is so focused on just the big boots."
           Newton still headlines concerts. She said many of the patriotic gigs she's played haven't been very solemn. "I was in Germany after the first Gulf War to welcome the troops home in Germany. That was very cool," she said. "They were having a heat wave. Everyone was in black socks and short shorts. I mean everyone has just creamy white skin because they don't do sun. Everyone had on black socks and loafers, and really short shorts. "It was the funniest thing."

Waylon's Grandson Dies with Girlfriend in Crash
By ANNE PAINE - May 27, 2003 - Taylor Ray Jennings, 22, a grandson of the late country star Waylon Jennings, died with his girlfriend early Saturday morning in Texas, when their car was broadsided by a pickup truck, police said. The driver of a Ford F150 pickup was speeding and drunk when he skidded through a red light and slammed into the couple's Plymouth Neon, an officer said.
           "It was apparently fleeing from the scene of an earlier wreck," said Sgt. Eric Hansen of the Grand Prairie, Texas, Police Department. The pickup's driver, Roberto Estrada Adame, was treated for injuries and then arrested on two counts of intoxication manslaughter and one of intoxication assault. He also will be charged with not having a driver's license or insurance and for not wearing a seat belt, Hansen said.
           Mr. Jennings, who was born in Nashville and had graduated from South Grand Prairie High School, worked as a bartender at a Tony Roma's. His girlfriend, Stacey Norman, 19, was a carhop at a Sonic Drive-In. The two were on their way home from work when the accident took place.
           "They lived together, loved together and died together," said Mr. Jennings' aunt, Deana Jennings of Fort Worth. The world lost a "beautiful mind" when her nephew died, she said. "When you talked to him, you always learned something. He was very inquisitive about life and would read up about things.
           Waylon Jennings, one of country music's original "outlaws," died Feb. 13, 2002, at 64 of complications from diabetes. Taylor Ray Jennings' mother, Julie, and his aunt Deana are both daughters of the late country singer. In addition to his aunt and mother, Mr. Jennings is survived by his grandmother, Maxine Hines, of Grand Prairie.

New Holly Dunn Album
Dick McVey just completed recording and mixing Holly Dunn's new album titled, "Full Circle" at his Moonlight Recording Studio near Nashville. The album is a collection of six Gospel standards and four self-penned Christian Country oriented songs. The album has a very acoustic flavor and will be available in about 30 days at
Dick McVey
9 Music Square South, PMB 177
Nashville, TN 37203
Phone 615-264-3637

Largest Country Concert Venue Promises Party, Party, Party
Wild Bill's Concert Hall to Open May 31
Wild Bill's, the largest country music concert hall in the United States is scheduled to throw open its doors and host its grand opening evening, May 31st in Gwinnett County, Georgia, just north of Atlanta. The venue will feature a huge array of amenities, among them a restaurant, an extensive game room, a bull, and its very own, real-life chat room. Open six nights a week, Tuesday through Sunday, Wild Bill's will operate from 7:00pm-3:00am. Ticket prices will vary.
           With an attendance capacity exceeding 5,000, the venue expects to host 30 national country music recording acts each year. On adjacent evenings Wild Bill's will present Bill Gentry And The 35 Cent Rodeo, a homegrown favorite and Georgia's number one country music act for three years running.
           Country music lovers are promised the biggest, brightest, and best evening out that can be found under one roof. Patrons will walk through a grand Hollywood-style entrance, stroll past the coat-check room and Wild Bill's gift shop, and make their way to a hot, hip, and country world of music and entertainment. There, they'll be greeted by the Wild Girls, the best-looking shooter girls, beer tub girls, and wait staff in Atlanta.
           The building decor includes animal-print carpet throughout, luxurious velvet couches and chairs scattered around the rooms, and elaborate and accommodating restroom facilities. The concert hall features a 50-foot stage; a state-of-the-art, multi-million dollar sound system; a high-end, custom-designed light show; and a 30-foot high fiber optic curtain. Clientele will groove to the beat on the largest solid-oak dance floor in the world, measuring more than 5,000 square feet.
           One of the venue's greatest assets, especially for those who do not smoke, is the top-of-the-line ventilation system that is set to completely remove stale, smoky room air and replace it with fresh, clean air every 13 minutes.
           The acre and a half-size building houses Wild Bill's Restaurant which will dish up All-American favorites including barbecue, steaks, and chicken, and the Wild Bill's Game Room outfitted with 12 pool tables, darts, Golden-T Golf, air hockey, and an Internet Cafe. Wild Bill's Electric Bull, approved by the PBR (Professional Bull Riders) assures those who dare the ride of a lifetime. For those who care to take a breather, relax, or chat with someone they've just met, there's Wild Bill's Velvet Room, a quiet, cozy nook complete with its own bar, pool table, and plush velvet seating.
           Wild Bill's is easy to find. It's located just off the interstate at I-85 and Pleasant Hill Road, in front of Gwinnett Place Mall. It's nestled in the heart of Gwinnett's largest hotel district. Wild Bill's is the country music hotspot of the New Millennium. It is postured and positioned to rank No. 1 among country music concert venues. It is absolutely one party that you do not want to miss!
           For a tour of the facility, contact Sherry Whitworth at Wild Bill's at 404-668-5996. For press inquiries, contact Randy Guidry or Debbie Holley at The Holley-Guidry Company at 615-460-9550.

Texas Senate Honors Willie Nelson
The Texas Senate honored Willie Nelson, with state Sen. Gonzalo Barrientos calling the singer a "true legend." The room erupted into cheers and applause. "This Texas treasure has talked the talk and he's walked the walk and we thank him for allowing us to celebrate stages and stages of his life today in the Texas Senate," Barrientos said. Barrientos gave him a Texas flag that was flown over the Capitol Friday and an official gavel that read: "To Willie Hugh Nelson, a Texas legend, happy birthday." Nelson turned 70 on April 30.

Worth a Click ...
RAY BUTTS R.I.P.(April, 2003) See an interview with Ray here.

Zeke Tyrner / Clayton Hall R.I.P.
Zeke Turner passed away on Palm Sunday (2003) in Daytona Beach FL. at the age of 79. Zeke was the guitarist for Red Foley's band from 1945-1947, Recorded with Hank Williams on his sessions recorded in Cincinnati at the Herzog Studios in 1947-1948, then spent a 20+ year career with Cincinnati's Midwestern Hayride. Zeke Turner (aka Jim Grishaw) pioneered the muted string technique on the guitar. For great samples of his guitar mastery, get Westside Records 'Hillbilly Bop and Boogie on King' released in 2002. Zeke learned the guitar from his older brother, Zeb Turner, also a King Recording artist and innovative guitarist. Zeke and Zeb Turner both made great contributions to the country music scene in the 40' and 50's. -Jeff Yaw

April 25, 2003 - Clayton Hall has died at age 83. A singer and multi-instumentalist, the last of ten children born in rural Patrick Co., Va., he and twin brother Saford were self-taught musicians who joined Roy Hall and his Blue Ridge Entertainers in 1939, (Clayton on banjo, Saford on fiddle) a group whose proto-bluegrass string band sound was made popular on broadcasts out of WDBJ, Roanoke, and Bluebird Records, and they performed with many other country stars such as Roy Rogers and The Sons Of The Pioneers. During WWII, he was an army infantryman who saw extensive action in the Pacific theatre, including the invasions of Leyte and Okinawa, was wounded twice, and received the Purple Heart and the Bronze Star. After the war the twins joined the band of fiddler Tommy Magness, The Orange Blossom Boys. In 1949, he left fulltime music, but from the 1960's continued to perform with his brother as The Hall Twins and the Westerners. A talented storyteller and stage presence, he played in public through 2002; his final performance in a large public venue was in 2001, accompanied by among others, his grandson Ralph Berrier, Jr. a writer for The Roanoke Times. Saford Hall died in 1999. Clayton Hall is survived by his wife of 55 years, Elinor Holland Hall, a brother, a daughter, and a passel of grandkids.

Saturday Nights, Featuring Mississippi Talent
Blue Springs Jamboree
1185 Hwy 9 South, Blue Springs, Mississippi "Music for the entire family" (Located 1-1/2 Miles North of Hwy 78 - Exit 73, Across from GENTRY'S Grocery) Presents ... The Kountry Kousins Band.
Vic Bonner ­ Lead Guitar/Vocals/Keyboard Dave Harris ­ Bass Guitar/Vocals
Dana Monaghan ­ Lead Vocals/Harmony
Gary Monaghan - Keyboard
Mike Hester ­ Drums/Vocals
Clark Hearn ­ Steel Guitar/ Vocals
Shun White ­ Keyboard/Bass Guitar/Vocals
           Come out for an Evening of GOOD MUSIC and Clean Family Entertainment in a SMOKE and ALCOHOL-FREE ENVIRONMENT. Open on Saturday Nights at 6:30 PM. Music starts at 7 PM, Admission - $3.00 for single/$5.00 for Couple - Children under 6 free. A Different Guest each week. DO YOU SING? BE OUR SPECIAL GUEST!! Call: Clark or Linda at (662) 534-5020
           Blue Springs Jamboree Opens. Blue Springs Jamboree opened for business on October 5, 2002. It is located in downtown Blue Springs at 1185 Hwy 9 south, across from Gentry's Grocery. Clark Hearn and his wife, the former Linda Hamblin, opened the business with the intent of offering the public an affordable, smoke and alcohol-free place to enjoy good music. Clark's son Junior and brother Dennis as well as Linda's son, David Parks, assist them. The house band, "Kountry Kousins", was named for a band formed in Polk County, Florida by Clark's brother, Benn Allen Hearn.
           Clark and Benn were born in Union County, but moved to Florida in 1965. Benn was killed in a traffic accident in Mufreesboro, Tennessee in 1989. Benn had formed his own record label and publishing company, also labeled "Kountry Kousins". Featuring Mississippi talent, each week Blue Springs Jamboree offers music by the house band as well as special guests and Recording Artists, covering a wide variety of Country, Contemporary Country and classical 50's-60's Rock music. Singers as young as five years of age have performed for the Jamboree audience.
           Open on Saturday nights only at the present time, (soon to be open also on Friday nights.) The Jamboree staff expects to begin Gospel Jubilees Shortly. Hours are 7pm-10pm. Admission is $5.00 couple, $3.00 singles, children under 6 free. (The Jamboree Building is also available with or without the band for private parties.) For bookings of private parties, or if you are interested in becoming part of the Jamboree Show, please contact Clark or Linda at one of the following numbers: (662) 534-5020, (662) 538-7757, (662) 316-0268. Or, come by the Jamboree during business hours on Saturday night.

Welcome to!
Friends and fans of the Shuey Brothers have come to expect the unexpected from this ensemble over the years. The Shuey Brothers deliver a unique brand of music and fun wherever they appear.
           Their approach to the music is simple - a good song is a good song, regardless of the genre it came from. With that as their driving philosophy, the Shuey Brothers arrange and perform songs from a wide variety of styles that adapt well to their acoustic sound and tight three part harmonies. On stage you will hear it all from the hard driving sound of bluegrass classics to the songs of Dylan, Haggard, Jones, and Craft along with original material by songwriters within the band.
           This approach to modern bluegrass music was made possible by legendary pioneers such as the Country Gentlemen and the Seldom Scene who opened the
           door for experimentation in acoustic music and to whom the bluegrass community owes a great debt. We hope you enjoy your time at and return often. For bookings or more information on the band, send us an email. We hope to see you at at an upcoming show! Email the Shuey Brothers -

The Lessons of Johnny Paycheck

Nashville Skyline is a column by CMT/ Editorial Director Chet Flippo.)
           Just studying the people who had gathered to send Johnny Paycheck off into eternity at his funeral service last Tuesday (Feb. 25) was an education for me about his legacy. The high-ceilinged, stained glass-windowed chapel at Woodlawn Funeral Home in Nashville slowly filled with a true cross-section of authentically hard-core country music fans.
           Some young, longhaired country fans. A whole church pew of hard-bitten Hells Angels in their full biker regalia, plus a member of the Red Devils motorcycle club who was bumped up to another row. A lot of middle-aged-plus men with long gray ponytails and jeans and the hard eyes of much life experience. Some burly guys whose noses had been re-arranged by fists. Some tough-looking women who showed a lot of life's lessons in their faces and their expressive eyes. Some very proper-looking men and women I would take for Sunday school teachers. A lot of nightclub denizens wearing sunglasses at 1 o'clock in the afternoon, indoors. A lot of black cowboy hats. And a whole lot of black leather. Several people I would avoid in a dark alley. By and large, it was the roughest-looking funeral crowd I have ever seen. But that's indicative of Paycheck's life and career.
           Paycheck in many ways is a classic example of the verity that anybody can become a country star. Unfortunately, he was also a textbook lesson of what can go wrong with country stardom. He showed that a talented nobody can make it big in country music and become a star. And that a talented nobody -- turned star -- can piss it all away. Along the way, he also wrote and recorded some brilliant songs that will endure for a long time. He died broke and was buried in a cemetery plot donated by his friend George Jones. He was a pariah in the business for many years.
           In the silence in the chapel before the service began, I could hear murmured snippets of conversations from around the room: "That's so-and-so." "Are you still on tour with Haggard?" "I just found out I've got kidney cancer."
           While Jones stood, head bowed, viewing Paycheck's body in the open casket, a man came up and said, "George, I met you backstage at blah blah blah. Don't Johnny look natural?" Well, Paycheck certainly looked better than he had in years, especially after his nursing home years when he wasted away. He looked fairly well pleased with himself at last, beard neatly trimmed, with his black cowboy hat posed regally on his chest and a lovely spray of red roses and white lilies atop the coffin and dozens of intricate floral displays arranged nearby.
           And there were some conversations that I can't reproduce here. The industry people who showed up demonstrated the respect that some still paid him. Pete Fisher, the head of the Grand Ole Opry, which embraced Paycheck in his later, redemptive years. Kyle Young, the head of the Country Music Hall of Fame. John Lomax III of the distinguished Lomax musicologist family. Nick Hunter, head of Audium Records, the most adventurous record label in town. (Hunter many years ago tracked down Paycheck -- when the latter had hit rock bottom and was living on Skid Row in Los Angeles -- and brought him back to Epic Records in Nashville, where he eventually hit superstardom with "Take This Job and Shove It."). Shelby Singleton, the old-time record label maestro. Eddie Stubbs, the masterful DJ from WSM-AM, who hosted an excellent four-hour Paycheck retrospective on WSM on Monday night.
           Jones and his wife Nancy were there, along with Trace Adkins, Little Jimmy Dickens, Jeannie Seely, John Conlee, Billy Walker, Harold Bradley and Billy Ray Reynolds. Absent were many country personalities who have professed to be friends or admirers of Paycheck.
           Paycheck was, as Stubbs said, a "complicated man." There were times when I saw Paycheck totally out of control, a (small) raging bull, so wound up on cocaine that he could barely speak. And at other times he was a golden-voiced paradigm of the country music tradition onstage, and a gentleman offstage. If you know him only by the song "Take This Job and Shove It," you have missed a great body of work. Paycheck was a master of the honky-tonk genre, one of country music's few true original talents, and he leaves a rich legacy of full-bodied country songs.
           He was taken advantage of, both by the paternalistic, opportunistic country music industry and by his own weaknesses. And those problems were confounded by the fact that he didn't have sound advice to lean on or role models to learn from. Those are country music industry problems that are not going to go away anytime soon.
           Like Paycheck's life and career, the funeral service was not what it could have been. The minister, who kept reminding us that he didn't know Paycheck, delivered pretty much a generic 23rd Psalm eulogy. No one else spoke. But there were many heartfelt "amens!" and much weeping, especially when a recording of what is perhaps Paycheck's best -- and certainly most self-revelatory -- composition, "Old Violin," was played. At the lines "Tonight I feel like an old violin/Soon to be put away and never played again," everyone stood, spontaneously, and gave Paycheck his last standing ovation in this life. And that energy seemed to cleanse the room. Smiles blossomed, amidst the tears. Strangers hugged as Paycheck was sent home.
           Like all of the best country music, Johnny Paycheck was just human. And he did the best that he could.

Worth a Click ...

Johnny Cash Does Nine Inch Nails Song
At 70, Johnny Cash (news) is rocking out with his cover of the Nine Inch Nails song "Hurt." The video for the searing song is getting play on MTV2 and VH1, and the song is in regular rotation on rock station KROQ-FM in LA. Directed by Mark Romanek, the video combines images of the young Cash from concerts and movies with new footage of the elderly singer crooning "You can have it all, my empire of dirt. I will let you down."

David Church's "Hank Williams Tribute
Album" With Special Guest Don Helms

David Church, who recently performed at the 50th Memorial Tribute to Hank Williams in Montgomery, AL; has recorded a "Hank Williams Tribute Album" in Nashville, TN. Church is known throughout the world for his incredible ability to sound so close to Hank Williams that you can hardly tell the difference. The album includes 12 songs previously recorded by the late Williams, and one original written by Church. The album titled, "A Legend Froze in Time," also includes legendary Hall of Fame steel player for Hank Williams, Don Helms. The project was recorded in Nashville with producer, Dick McVey, at Moonlight Studios.
           After completing the music, McVey thought it would be an added touch to include an interview with David and Don Helms, and also recorded a 20 minute session, to be included at the end of the album. Church never dreamed he would be able to meet Helms, let alone perform and record with him. Don also performed as steel player for Church at the 50th Memorial in Montgomery. David and his wife, Terri Lisa, are currently on tour with "Images of a Country Drifter," a memorial tribute to Hank Williams. The show includes narration on the life of Hank Williams, with input from many of the musicians that played with Hank, both museums, (Georgiana and Montgomery) and Mary Wallace, fan club president. The show features Church with over 20 songs written and recorded by the late Williams.
           The album is due to be released in late March, early April. For more information on where you can purchase the album, or find out where the next show will be, you can visit their website at:

Lefty Frizzell Festival
There will be a 2nd Annual Lefty Frizzell Music Festival in Pawnee, Oklahoma on May 10, 2003. All you Lefty Frizzell fans should plan on attending. If you need more information, you can contact Wanda by email. She is doing the publicity and promotions for the event.

The Derailers to Perform at SXSW
The Derailers will release their sophomore album, Genuine, on March 25, and perform at the mega music conference, South x Southwest on March 14 at Auditorium Shores in Austin. The group will be joined by Robinella & the CC String Band, The Gourds, and The Del McCoury Band.

CMA Announces Date For 37th Awards Show
The CMA Awards continues its run during November sweeps in 2003. The 37th Annual CMA Awards will be held live November 5 at 8 p.m. EST on CBS from Nashville. Returning for his twelfth turn at the host's podium will be Country superstar Vince Gill. "Moving the Awards to November sweeps has been good for the network, good for the CBS affiliates and good for Country Music," said CMA Executive Director Ed Benson. "The CMA Awards are a success on many levels - the widespread critical acclaim for the depth and diversity of our performers; the ratings windfall for the network; and consumer response at the retail level. 'Country Music's Biggest Night' has found a high-impact placement in November."
           CBS's broadcast of "The 36th Annual CMA Awards," on November 6, 2002, led the network to its first Wednesday win of the 2002-03 season in viewers and households finishing in the Top 10 most-watched programs for the week according to Nielsen ratings. The eligibility period for the 2003 CMA Awards is July 1, 2002 to June 30, 2003. The first ballot will be mailed to eligible CMA voting members May 29. It is necessary to have 10 nominations to be included on the second ballot, which is mailed to eligible members July 22. The final ballot will be mailed to the membership September 23. The final nominees in the 12 categories for "The 37th Annual CMA Awards" will be announced at a press conference August 26 in Nashville.

Everett Corbin's "If Kisses Could Talk" CD
"If Kisses Could Talk" ... they'd go telling you all about these songs, written by Everett Corbin, a former newspaperman and at one time editor of "Music City News."
           Corbin had his first song copyrighted in 1949, the year Hank Williams had his first big hit with "Lovesick Blues." In 1951, he first showed up at Acuff-Rose Publication with "If Kisses Could Talk" (could Hank have heard that song?) ... and his cousin, Owen Priester, recorded (on June 5, 1956) "I'm Walking My Blues Away," "Gonna Ease My Worried Mind" and "If Kisses Could Talk," along with Corbin, who sang: "Lay That Pistol Down.
           Corbin went into the studio following the Vernon Oxford session in 1979 and cut about 25 songs (again, all original compositions). and did a tribute to Vernon titled "He's An Unknown Superstar." The next 3 songs on this CD are taken from that original Oxford session in 1979.
           "Ole Lady Blues" is the only yodeling song Corbin has ever written, captured here in good fashion by Dick Flood, whom Corbin did some publicity for while serving as the editor of "The Donelson (Nashville) News Diary (1965-80). His stint at MCN was basically at the same time: 1966-76 (serving in various capacities, including Bluegrass editor). Thus the song "Green Pastures and Blue Skies" by bluegrass great, Carl Story.
           "Death and Taxes" is a recitation piece done by Corbin from his non-commercial CD "America Today." "I've Lost Him to a Honky Tonk" was written especially for Jo Anne Marvec, but is sung here by a niece, Diane Carnes. The remainder of the tunes include some thoughts on the environment, social issues, and a novelty tune "I Ain't Gonna Put No Diapers on My Horse."
           Get your copy of this real traditional sounding CD. Contain Everett at Or mail to: Everett Corbin, Corbin Music BMI, 5801 Halls Hill Pike. Murfreesboro, TN 37130.

Light Crust Doughboys: "A Cowboy Valentine"
DALLAS - The legendary Light Crust Doughboys will appear in concert at the Pocket Sandwich Theatre in "A Cowboy Valentine," on Monday, February 10, at 7:30. This will be their first Pocket Concert of 2003, and they will appear every other month throughout the year.
           The Doughboys were named this year to the Texas Cowboys Hall Of Fame. The Doughboys and George Strait are the first musicians to be accorded this honor. The Doughboys are the longest continually performing Western Swing group in America. Their many honors include five Grammy Award nominations, as well as two nominations for a Dove Award, the most prestigious award for gospel music.
           The Doughboys have released many popular albums ­ CDs and cassettes ­ featuring not only Texas western swing, but also folk, blues, and gospel. Their most recent release, nominated this year for a Grammy, is "We Called Him Mr. Gospel Music: The James Blackwood Tribute Album," with the Light Crust Doughboys, the Jordanaires, and Larry Ford. They were nominated for a Grammy in 2002 for "God Is Love: The Gospel Sessions," with superstar Ann-Margret.
             Sponsored by the Realife Nutrition Center of Irving, the performances will showcase the Doughboys' Western Swing standards, with featured performers Jerry Elliott, Bill Simmons, John Walden, Jim Baker, and Art Greenhaw. As usual, the Doughboys Brass and Reed Ensemble will be on hand to provide a big-band sound to the Doughboys' Western Swing.
           The theatre will open for "A Cowboy Valentine" at 6:30 on Monday, February 10, and the show will begin at 7:30. Optional food and beverage service will be available. Tickets (show only) are $14.00. Special "meal deal" tickets (show, choice of entree, soft drink and tax) are available for $19.00.
           The Pocket Sandwich Theatre is located at 5400 East Mockingbird, Suite 119, Mockingbird Central Plaza, one block east of Central Expressway. For reservations or information, call 214-821-1860.

Anne Murray on Winter Tour
Murray's tour supports her 33rd album, last October's "Country Croonin'." The set, which features renditions of 30 country classics, is Murray's "tribute to the great country songs and artists of the late 1940's to the early 1980's," according to her official website. A complete track listing for the album, which Murray has called "the best thing I've ever done," is posted at the site. The site also features audio samples of a number of the album's tracks.
           Canada's East Coast Music Association recently nominated Murray for its Female Artist of the Year and Country Artist of the Year awards. The awards ceremony is set to take place on Feb. 16. On Feb. 24, CBS will air a two-hour concert special titled "Anne Murray RSVP," during which Murray will perform before a live audience at the Canadian Broadcasting Center in Toronto. The singer plans to deliver "favourites from the 33 albums that span [her] 34-year career," and will take requests from members of the audience, according to Murray's website. Murray's site is hosting a contest through which fans have a shot at winning tickets to "Anne Murray RSVP."

February 2003
4, 5 - Prescott, AZ - Yavapai College
7, 8 - Costa Mesa, CA - Orange County Performing Arts Center
9 - Escondido, CA - California Center
11 - Fresno, CA - William Saroyan Theatre
12 - Redding, CA - Win River Casino
14, 15 - Oroville, CA - Gold Country Casino
16 - Kelseyville, CA - Konocti Harbor Resort
May 2003
2, 3 - Lancaster, PA - American Music Theatre

Worth a Click ...

Traditional Country Hall of Fame Endorsed

A stand-alone electronic bass drum! Be able to produce earth-shaking, window-rattling sounds! Perfect for small combos or enhancing bands. Produces excellent recording capabilities without expensive microphones. Powered by a standard 9-volt battery and micro-power electronics. Can be driven by a foot petal or any simple switch. Has built-in automatic function for metronome emulation with variable rate. Plug it into any bass or P.A. amplifier, either high or low level, with adjustable output control. Has variable frequency control, from a small kick drum to sub-sonic. Has variable decay, from "tight" to "boom". Small in size, fits easily in the palm of you hand. Can be fitted to attach to the foot petal on a bass drum to provide extra "punch" to your group. For further information, contact: Marty Jensen, 608/241-0159, E-mail

Unreleased Van Zandt Songs Discovered
A collection of singer-songwriter Townes Van Zandt's earliest recordings will be released this spring. In the Beginning will feature 10 previously unreleased songs that were recorded as demos in 1966. The collection of solo and band recordings predates the release of his debut album, For the Sake of the Song. Ex-wife Jeanene Van Zandt says, "Townes told me about these songs many times and I had lyrics on them, but he insisted he had recorded them when he first came to Nashville. Townes' first publisher, Jack Clement, rang me about 10 years ago when he came upon a cache of Townes material, but neither of us thought there was anything else in the vaults. Then I got a call from our mutual friend, photographer C.J. Flanagan, who said Jack had found these tapes when he was converting the catalog to digital." Van Zandt died in 1997. In the Beginning will be released by Compadre Records on April 22.

Monroe and Presley on National Registry
Vintage performances by Bill Monroe, Elvis Presley and Woody Guthrie are among the first 50 recordings to be entered into the National Recording Registry at the Library of Congress in Washington, D.C. The registry was created to provide greater protection for songs and speeches that are "culturally, historically or aesthetically significant." Monroe and his band, the Bluegrass Boys, will be represented by his 1947 recording of "Blue Moon of Kentucky." The song is also included in Presley's sessions in 1954 and 1955 for Memphis-based Sun Records. Those Sun recordings are included in the registry, along with Guthrie's 1944 recording of "This Land Is Your Land." The registry will also feature Victor Records' famed sessions in Bristol, Tenn. The 1927 recordings feature the Carter Family, Jimmie Rodgers and Ernest Stoneman. The Grand Ole Opry's first network radio broadcast is also included in the registry in a 1939 performance featuring Roy Acuff and Uncle Dave Macon. Other entries include two 1922 recordings by fiddler Eck Robinson and field recordings made by folklorists John and Ruby Lomax during a 1939 tour of the southern U.S. In a related note, former Country Music Foundation director Bill Ivey has been named chairman of the board of directors of the National Recording Preservation Foundation. Ivey left the CMF in 1997 to become chairman of the National Endowment for the Arts.

South Texas Music Festival
Beginning Wednesday of the 3rd week in February and running for five days through the weekend (Feb. 19-23 for 2003), a chunk of Americana is presented at the South Texas Music Festival with 300 shows on 12 stages in Mercedes, Texas. Mercedes is located in the Rio Grande Valley near Brownsville and McAllen, 8 miles from the Mexican border and 42 miles from South Padre Island.
           There's 130 acres of bluegrass, country, folk, western Texas Swing, Mariachi, Tejano and religious music with folkloric dancing and clogging. Amateurs join a host of professional entertainers from all over the world. There's even some open mic's with lots of picking, storming, and jamming, along with tortilla throwing contests, arts &crafts, food, and fun. In addition, there are contests and workshops in harmonica, guitar, fiddle, banjo, mandolin, vocalists, liars, poetry, yodeling, song writing, and even saws as instruments. $1,000.00 cash for the first place winner in the songwriting contest Along with all the music there will be a Antiquate &custom car show & swap meet.
           For Information call Paul Martinez 956-464-7767 - Email - Web site - Hope you can make it this year, camping available. If you need a Hotel call 956-461-6600 AND ASK FOR SOUTH TEXAS MUSIC FESTIVAL GROUP RATE for a great discount.

Hylo Brown passed away on Friday (Jan. 17) at age 80
Born Apr 20, 1922 in River, KY. Bluegrass and country singer Frank Brown earned the nickname "Hylo" thanks to the considerable vocal range that became his trademark. Born in 1922 in Johnson County, KY ‹ later the birthplace of Loretta Lynn ‹ Brown had thoroughly absorbed the music indigenous to his Appalachian home before moving with his family to Ohio, where his career as a performer began to gather steam. There, he played on local radio broadcasts and began writing songs; one composition, a tribute to the Grand Ole Opry, was recorded by Jimmy Martin. In 1950, he sang harmony on a Bradley Kincaid session.
           In 1954, a song titled "Lost to a Stranger" earned Brown a recording contract with Capitol Records; the subsequent single, along with follow-ups like "Lovesick and Sorrow" and "The Wrong Kind of Life," were minor hits. In 1957, Brown joined Lester Flatt and Earl Scruggs, becoming a featured vocalist with the duo's Foggy Mountain Boys. The group's increasing popularity prompted Flatt and Scruggs to form a second Foggy Mountain band, called the Timberliners, with Brown as the unit's frontman; the Timberliners were fleshed out by mandolin player Red Rector, fiddler Clarence "Tater" Tate, Jim Smoak on the banjo, and bassist Joe Phillips.
           At their inception, the Timberliners performed on a circuit of television stations in Tennessee and Mississippi, later swapping schedules with Flatt & Scruggs in order to appear on West Virginia airwaves as well. In 1958, the group released Hylo Brown and the Timberliners, an LP that remains a traditional bluegrass classic. However, the advent of syndication and videotape allowed the original Flatt & Scruggs band to appear on any number of TV stations, effectively ending the Timberliners' career soon after, although Brown soldiered on for a time with a group including Norman Blake on Dobro and Billy Edwards on banjo. After the Timberliners' demise, Brown rejoined Flatt & Scruggs as a featured singer.
           In the early '60s, Brown cut a handful of solo records, including 1961's Bluegrass Balladeer, 1962's Bluegrass Goes to College, and the next year's Hylo Brown Meets the Lonesome Pine Fiddlers. Throughout the decade and into the first years of the '70s, he performed solo in clubs, releasing records infrequently on small labels. However, a gradual diminishment in his vocal range resulted in Brown's eventual retirement around the middle of the decade. -Jason Ankeny

Dwight's "Chicken Lickin's Chicken Fries"
Available At Wal-Mart Supercenter Stores

Country superstar Dwight Yoakam has a new addition to his Bakersfield Biscuits product line with Chicken Lickin's Chicken Fries. The unique, all white chicken meat in the shape of a french fry, will be available exclusively at Wal-Mart Supercenter stores starting Monday, January 20th.
           Chicken Lickin's Chicken Fries are frozen, fully cooked strips of chicken that can be heated either in a microwave or in the oven. Simply open the resealable bag, remove as many of the chicken fries as desired, and prepare them. The result is great tasting chicken fries with real down home goodness in a matter of minutes.
           "The response from the Chicken Lickin's Chicken Fries has been great," said John Marburger, President of Modern Foods. "They are delicious and convenient, perfect for a quick and easy meal, snack, or appetizer at Superbowl parties."
           Chicken Lickin's Chicken Fries are the newest addition to Dwight Yoakam's Bakersfield Biscuits products, which also includes delicious Lanky Links precooked pork sausage links, and mouthwatering biscuits and gravy. The biscuits include sausage gravy, chicken stew, country style gravy, beef stew and beef chili gravy. Based on his Granny Earlene's recipe, the biscuits are made with high quality ingredients with no preservatives or artificial flavors.
           Acclaimed actor, director, producer and musician Dwight Yoakam is achieving rave reviews in the world of food retailing with his Dwight Yoakam's Bakersfield Biscuits product line. He is also enjoying the success of his Reprise/Rhino boxed set "Reprise Please Baby: Dwight Yoakam - The Warner Bros. Years." The four-disc set features songs from throughout his impressive career. Yoakam has sold over 22 million albums worldwide and charted 17 Top 10 hits.

Catching Up With ... Ray Price
by Bob Paxman / COUNTRYWEEKLY.COM on January 14, 2003 - After 50 years of hits, Ray Price keeps shuffling along. Ray, 76, who's often credited with perfecting the shuffle rhythm singing style, is celebrating his half-century in music with a new album, appropriately titled Time. And he feels the time is right for releasing a record of pure, traditional country. You don't hear a lot of that on the radio these days, he declares, relaxing at his home in Mt. Pleasant, Texas. I dont mean to sound like sour grapes, but thats the way it is.
           Actually, he has little to be sour about. Ray scored eight No. 1 hits during his career, starting in 1956 with Crazy Arms, the song that made him a full-fledged star. He's also considered one of the most influential singers in history, inspiring such stars as Willie Nelson and Kris Kristofferson.
           Ray bolstered his legend by being a bit of a maverick. Though he built his reputation with country and honky-tonk tunes, he did a complete about-face in the late 1960s, recording lush pop ballads with full string backgrounds. I took some hits for that, he laughs. Some of the disc jockeys around the country really laid it on me for doing that. Some of them wouldnt play my records, because they said Id left country music. But I did all right.
           Did he ever! Rays smooth sound produced such chart-toppers as the classic For The Good Times and Youre The Best Thing That Ever Happened To Me. The hits kept coming through the 1980s, and, in 1996, Ray was inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame. People thought I might stop once I got in the Hall of Fame, reveals Ray in his trademark Texas drawl. But I still do about 100 shows a year. And I have the new record, which is getting a nice reaction. One of these days, though, Ill definitely quit.
           When he does, it wont be for health reasons. Im still in good shape, he confides. Last year, it was reported that Id had a heart attack, but that was completely wrong. I had a little bout with my blood pressure, and Im still trying to get that settled down. He lets loose a hefty laugh. Everything else seems to be working OK!
           Working continues to give him a kick. There are more albums I want to record, including a religious album, he explains. As long as people seem to like what I do, Ill keep doing it.

East Texas Deejay Dies After Heart Rttack
By MIKE ELSWICK - Jan. 13. 2003 - Funeral services for longtime East Texas radio personality and entertainer Glenn "T-Bone" Bumgardner were pending Friday afternoon with Rader Funeral Home of Longview. Bumgardner, 48, was known by his nickname, T-Bone, on radio stations in Longview, Tyler and Marshall in an entertainment career that spanned about 30 years. Warren Bradley, another radio announcer and entertainer, said he had talked with Bumgardner Thursday night. "This is a tremendous shock to all of us who knew him," Bradley said. He said Bumgardner was hospitalized a couple of weeks ago with what medical officials told him had been a heart attack. "But when I talked to him Thursday he was sounding really good and planning to go back to work Monday," Bradley said. "I've known T-Bone for years. We worked together at several different stations over the years." Bradley said T-Bone and he did sports talk shows on KFRO-AM and for a Tyler station while Bumgardner also had done a morning show for KLUE radio station.
           Since August he has been working for KCUL in Marshall, said Phyllis Bailey, station manager. Bailey said she also had known Bumgardner for years and had worked with him prior to his most recent stint at KCUL. "He's been around for probably 25 or 30 years working in radio and performing ‹ he's done about everything in this business," Bailey said. At KCUL he had been deejay of the station's 5-9 a.m. morning show and co-hosted with Bailey a talk show called Coffee and Comments. "He was a great friend and a great employee," Bailey said. "We will miss him." Gary Mason, with Longview's KYKX-FM, echoed Bailey's comments.
           "He was a super guy who I've known for years," Mason said. "He's going to be missed in this area." Mason said he has worked with Bumgardner for many concerts and benefits over the years. "T-Bone was well-loved by everyone who knew him," Mason said. One of his last conversations with Bumgardner came on New Year's Eve, which Bumgardner knew was Mason and his wife Carla's anniversary. "He knew 'You Light Up My Life' was our song from our wedding night," Mason said. "I was talking to him while we were at Oxford Street on our anniversary. He wanted me to put Carla on the phone and he sang that to her from his hospital bed." Bumgardner also worked at KYKX-FM both on the air and as operations manager.

Bluegrass Pioneer, Mandolinist Buzz Busby Dies
Buzz Busby, 69, an acclaimed bluegrass mandolinist, songwriter and bandleader who helped Washington develop a reputation as a bluegrass center in the 1950s and spent a lifetime wrestling with an addiction to alcohol and drugs, died of cardiac arrest Jan. 5, 2003 at the Forest Haven nursing home in Catonsville, Md. Mr. Busby also had Parkinson's disease and diabetes, and was largely sidelined from his career since undergoing a quintuple bypass operation in 1990. Mr. Busby, who led the Bayou Boys band in the 1950s, was considered a local bluegrass pioneer and specialized in the "high lonesome" sound popularized by Bill Monroe - a traditional, fast-paced music with which Mr. Busby found favor on television and area clubs.

RCA Will Lay Off 50
Jan 9, By Justin Oppelaar. The newly created RCA Music Group will lay off about 50 staffers from its RCA Records and J Records labels as part of an effort to trim back-office expenses and build a new team under recently installed chief Clive Davis. The layoffs, which had been expected, came two months after parent BMG bought the half of J it didn't already own from Davis, pairing it with RCA Records to form the group. Davis then replaced the outgoing Robert Jamieson as group chief. The cuts will hit hardest at RCA, which has a more substantial back-office infrastructure. Sources close to the company say the promotion and sales departments at both labels will take the brunt, with some additional downsizing in A&R. "Staff reductions at RCA Music Group are part of our effort to eliminate duplicate positions and responsibilities among certain areas at RCA Records and J Records," the company said in a statement. "These changes won't affect the independent creative integrity of the two labels."

Legendary Steel Guitarist Walter Haynes to be
inducted into the Steel Guitar Hall of Fame

From Rick Sharp - The Legendary Steel Guitarist Walter Haynes is to be inducted into the Steel Guitar Hall of Fame this year. Walter was the second person to record the pedal steel on "We Could You and I" by Little Jimmy Dickens, and has played steel on countless hits by many of the all time greatest acts in county music. Walter then worked at the right hand of Owen Bradley, producing the same country stars. As Vice President of MCA Records in Nashville, he produced "Satin Sheets" and received the prestigious CMA Producer of the Year for "Country Bumpkin". And these are only a few of Walter's accomplishments. Walter is staying very busy with his studio ,production and management company and publishing company, playing steel and fiddle better that ever. He is moving his studio and business back to Pigeon Forge Tn. and will be performing at the Classic Country Theatre. He is truly one of the greatest studio musicians to ever grace the country music industry. To learn more about Walter, check out his site:

Legends Fest to Air as Two-Hour Special
Nashville, TN - Marty Martel, President/Midnight Special Productions Inc., announced "Legends Fest" featuring Little Jimmy Dickens, Hank Thompson, Jean Shepard, Bill Anderson, Charlie Louvin, Jeannie Seely and hosted by Emmy award winning television great Ralph Emery will debut nationally on Saturday, January 4th, 6:00 AM (CST) on the Great American Country (GAC) Network.
           The two-hour special, which features dazzling performance and behind the scenes footage of these country music legends, was filmed at Spirit Lake Resort & Casino in St. Michael, North Dakota.
           For re-air dates and times, please visit - the official web-site of Great American Country (GAC) Network.
           Legends Fest is produced by CJM Productions in association with Midnight Special Productions Inc. and Spirit Lake Resort & Casino.

Derailers to do Brother Bush Inaugural
The Derailers have been invited to take part in the inauguration festivities for Florida Governor Jeb Bush on January 6 and 7 in Tallahassee. They will perform on a bill with the Blind Boys of Alabama and Blues Traveler at an inaugural ball on Monday, January 6, which will be attended by over 2500 patrons including Governor Bush, former President George Bush and their families. The guys, who just wrapped up recording their second Lucky Dog album due out in March, will also be on hand for the inauguration ceremonies on Tuesday, January 7.

VA Honors Wayne Newton
           Las Vegas singer and performer Wayne Newton stopped by VA headquarters in Washington, D.C., recetly to receive a plaque from Secretary of Veterans Affairs Anthony J. Principi in honor of his time and efforts to pay homage to the men and women who have donned our Nation's uniforms.
           Secretary Principi presented Newton with a plaque that read: "From a grateful Nation to a great patriot who has given a lifetime of service to America's veterans, from Vietnam to Afghanistan. Your heart for, and dedication to, those who have served our Nation in uniform exemplifies the very spirit of America."
           Newton's commitment to America's veterans dates to Vietnam, where he made two tours with the United Service Organizations. Newton, who is chairman of the USO Celebrity Circle, has visited troops in the Mediterranean, Persian Gulf and, recently, Afghanistan.

Worth a Click ...

Nashville's Alt-Country Hoedown, Nov. 30th
           Nashville's Alt-Country Hoedown will take place at The End, beginning this Saturday, November 30. Hosted by Suzette and the Neon Angels, this monthly showcase featuring non-pop country and roots music, has outgrown the Springwater, where the show has taken place over the past two years. "I'm thankful to Kara and the Springwater for giving us this great start. It's been fun helping Nashville's underground roots music scene have a regular place to perform," says Suzette. "I book the Alt-Country Hoedown and I try to focus on non-pop country, to show that Music City U.S.A. has alot more to it than just the pop sound Nashville is known for. There's a huge underground here and that's what drew me to Nashville."
           Performing at this month's Alt-Country Hoedown will be: Phil Lee, The Swindlers, Saddlesong, Tony Brook. Suzette and the Neon Angels.
           Y'all come and hear some real honkytonk music, alt-country, bluegrass, rockabilly. JUST ROOTSY STUFF! Also be filming the show for a possible television show we're putting together called "Nashville Underground." Come and be a part of the filming! The End is located at 2219 Elliston Place. Across the street from Exit-Inn. Cover is $5.00. Show starts at 9:30. The Alt-Country Hoedown is sponsored by Realbilly Records, Texas Girl Enterprises, Boyd Where Prohibited Video Production and TexPatriate Records. Yeehaw!

Dean Miller Releases Duet with His Late Father
           Nashville, TN - November 25, 2002 - Universal South recording artist Dean Miller has embraced his heritage by recording a "duet" of the Christmas classic "Old Toy Trains" with his late father, Country Music Hall of Fame member Roger Miller.
           "When I was born, he wrote it for me--and about me--at Christmas time," Dean recalls. "I've heard it every Christmas since I was two years old. It's a gift I get from him every year."
           A formidable songwriting talent in his own right, Dean approached the label this Fall about the collaboration. Producer Tony Brown transferred Roger Miller's original 1967 recording of the song to modern technology and matched the contemporary vocals of Dean with the vintage ones of his father.
           "The sound of that original track was just incredible, even by today's standards," says Brown. "Then when we started switching back and forth between their verses, it made the hairs on our arms stand up. The texture of their voices was so similar. It's great to see Dean acknowledging and embracing his heritage."
           "He raised me and was always there," says Dean of his late father. "But when I began my own career, I wanted to sing my own songs that create my own identity as an artist. But my dad left such a wonderful legacy that somewhere along the way, I came to the point where I wanted to embrace it. This song was the perfect way to do that. I knew that recording with his voice was going to be emotional, but I didn't know how emotional. It gave me chills."
           The father-son bond represented by "Old Toy Trains" makes it the year's most extraordinary holiday offering. Says Tony Brown, "When Dean said he wanted to do this, I was really excited. Everyone at Universal South is enormously proud of this record."
           Dean will perform "Old Toy Trains" on this year's televised Grand Ole Opry Christmas Special on December 21st. A cd single will be shipped to radio, but will not be commercially released. Dean's Universal South debut album is scheduled for the Spring of 2003.
           Roger Miller (1936-1992) earned five Gold albums, five Gold singles and eleven Grammy Awards. At the 1965 Grammy ceremony he won six of music's highest accolades, a number that is still unequaled by any country artist. He starred in his own NBC-TV series in 1966. Later in the decade, he introduced such standards as Bobby Russell's "Little Green Apples" and Kris Kristofferson's "Me and Bobby McGee." He brought Ronnie Milsap to stardom at his King of the Road showplace in Music City in 1970. Roger Miller was inducted into the Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame in 1973, the same year he provided the tunes for Disney's cartoon feature Robin Hood.
           For more information, please contact:

Billy Joe Shaver's New Album is Haunting
Singer-songwriter Billy Joe Shaver's new album, "Freedom's Child," hit retail shelves this week, nearly two years after his son and collaborator Eddy died of a drug overdose. Shaver's songs always have been about life's struggles, but this album is especially poignant. Not only does it reflect Shaver's feelings after losing his son, but he lost his wife and mother to cancer in 1999 and he suffered a heart attack while performing at a Texas honky-tonk soon after Eddy died. "It is easier to be honest when you write about what you know," Shaver tells The Denver Post. "So, it's kind of hard to get away from that."

of Mesquite, TX died Nov. 5, 2002. Retired U.S. Postal employee and country western entertainer. Proceeded in death by father Wesley W. Walker, mother Claudie O'dell Wilson, and son Wesley O'Dell Walker. Survived by daughters Beverly A. Foster and Pamela K. Thomas. 11 grandchildren and 8 great-grandchildren. Memorial service on Friday, Nov. 22 @ 12 noon, 409 E. Main St., Richardson, TX 75081. Parking across the street or corner of Dorothy & Main.

Will The Real Country Music Please Stand Up
By Col. Robert Morris
           Country Music, what is it? Over the years the answer has changed often, and it has changed drastically. The older members of the Grand Old Opry feel that they are being passed over for the young artist who's songs are charting. And the evidence has proved them right.
           And! The old and young traditional country artist feel that they cannot get their songs passed the corporate giants.
           On the other hand! The "new artist" of today, say that they are just giving the fans what they want. And they judge that by the record sales, and concert ticket sales.
           But! When the powers that may be, only let certain types of songs through the door, and onto the radio, (Please don't try to tell me the record companies don't control the radio programs.) then that has to modify the taste of the fans. If you don't include traditional country equally on the radio, and in the records released, than buyers will buy what you offer. Supply and Demand!
           Now What? Isn't it about time that we find a new home for Traditional Country Music.? The Opry don't want our kind anymore. Pete Fisher for sure don't want us "Grey Hair Artist" on His Opry!
           So! Should we start looking for a new home for Traditional Country Music? Maybe a new town. Somewhere that does not already have a musical influnce. Memphis has the blues and rock & roll. New Oleans has the blues and jazz. And Ohio has some rock & roll.
           Now Mississippi on the other hand, has a little taste of all types of music without calling any of it the sound of Mississippi. I propose that we pack up the artist and writers, musicans, producers, etc. rent a couple U-Hauls, and Head west young man, head west. I know that Mississippi would be here with open arms.
           So ya'll talk about it. Take a vote. And make up your minds real soon, before traditional country music goes the way of Disco. (What's a disco?)
           Colonel Robert Morris
           Rockabilly Hall Of Famer
           Traditional Country Hall Of Famer

Ain't It Time The Grand Old Opry Came Home

After the response of the aboves article, I thought I'd dive in a little farther. We left off with the idea of moving Traditional Country Music to Mississippi, which is still a great idea.
           I had a dream last night that would fix the problem at the Grand Old Opry. Let's take the circle out of the floor of the new opry building, take it back to the Rhyman where it belongs. Split the hour long Saturday night T.V. broadcast into two half hour shows. The first one from the new opry building to be called "The New Opry Show!"
           You can have all of the Faith Hills, Dixie Chicks, etc. that you can stand. Then the second half will be at the Rhyman, the true Mother Church of Country Music. Now this would be known as "The Grand Old Opry!"
           Three weeks a month would have only Traditional Opry Members. One week out of the month would have guest, but not to exceed one a night. This of course is in reguards to the T.V. portion.
           Each group would then be accountable to the floormat of the non T.V. shows, with the idea of seperating the types of Country Music intact. The rest of the radio show could then be split down the middle, or into seperate nights. (One on Friday night, the other on Saturday night.) And that Pete Fisher would never be the manager of the Grand Old Opry!!!
           Tell me what you think.
           Colonel Robert Morris
           Two Time Hall Of Famer

Willie to Perform at 2002 Nobel Peace Prize Concert
             Music legend, and Lost Highway Records recording artist, Willie Nelson has been slated to perform at the 2002 Nobel Peace Prize Concert. The event will take place on December 11 in Oslo, Norway. Willie, along with many other artists, will join in the celebration of this year's Nobel Prize winner, former President of the United States Jimmy Carter.
           Following the event, the concert will be broadcast to over 450 million homes in over 100 countries. The event can be seen in the United States on the A&E Network on January 25, 2003.
           On November 5, Lost Highway released "Willie Nelson & Friends: Stars & Guitars", an 18-track live CD recorded at Nashville's legendary Ryman Auditorium. A multitude of diverse artists appeared at this special event to pay tribute to Nelson, a living icon. The CD features Willie performing with such artists as Sheryl Crow, Ryan Adams, Emmylou Harris, Keith Richards, Jon Bon Jovi, Lee Ann Womack, Norah Jones, Brian McKnight, Matchbox 20 and Vince Gill.

Annual Floyd Tillman Birthday Bash, Nov. 21
           The Llano Country Opry proudly presents a special edition of the Llano Opry-the Annual Floyd Tillman Birthday Bash at the Lantex Theater in Llano, Texas, on Thursday, November 21. The show begins at 7:30 pm and advance tickets are on sale at the Llano Chamber of Commerce, Pleasingly Plus, Llano National Bank, Kingsland Chamber, KNEL radio or (915) 247-5354. Tickets are $8.00.
           Several special guests have been invited to help celebrate Floyd Tillman's 88th Birthday. Past years attendees included Willie Nelson, Johnny Gimble, Big Bill Lister, Johnny Bush, Frankie Miller, Darrell & Mona McCall, Jimmie Eaves and Al Dean.
           One of country music's most successful songwriters, Floyd Tillman was born in Ryan, Oklahoma in 1914. He became a singer, guitarist, mandolin and banjo player with the Mark Clark Orchestra and the Blue Ridge Playboys during the 1930's. He signed his first recording contract with Decca Records in 1939. His first hit was his self penned "It Makes No Difference Now."
           During the late 1940's, Tillman wrote such compositions as "I Love You So Much It Hurts Me" (1948), "Slippin Around" (1949) and "I'll Never Slip Around Again" (1949). These songs became instant hits and sold into the millions of copies during the "early" days of country music. Tillman would also add "Each Night At Nine" "Mr. Bottle" "I'm Still In Love With Every Girl" "Cold Cold War With You" "I'll Keep On Loving You" and "Daisy Mae" to his list of over 200 recorded compostions.
           Tillman's biggest hit "Slippin Around" was the first actual cheating song written in country music. Tillman received the inspiration for the song after overhearing a man and a woman talk in a café. It became a million selling hit being recorded by Tillman, Ernest Tubb, Margaret Whiting and Jimmy Wakely and Ella Fitzgerald.
           A honky tonk hero and among the first to utilize the electric guitar, Tillman was also elected into the Nashville Songwriter's Hall of Fame in 1970 and into the even greater Country Music Hall of Fame in 1984. "Floyd Tillman is one of the greatest songwriters and entertainers in country music," Willie Nelson said during 1999's Floyd Tillman Birthday Bash in Llano.  "He was one of the first stylist and still have the ability to keep an audience in the palm of his hand. He is one of my heroes and I love him."
           Others already slated to be on the show include Frankie Miller, Pete Mitchell, Tommy Kent, Frank Torres, Justin Trevino, Dora Lee Sewell, Jimmy Eaves, Don Ricketson, Melanie Tacker and Sammy Geistweidt. Tracy Pitcox will MC the show.
           The Llano Country Opry will move to the second Saturday of every month beginning in 2003. Several acts have already been booked for next year including Ray Price and the Cherokee Cowboys, Johnny Rodriguez, Jean Shepard, The Hortons, Gene Watson and the Farwell Party Band, Johnny Bush and Tony Douglas and the Shrimpers.

Ronnie Milsap Live to Audience of 11 Million
           Whether fans adore him as a legendary country superstar or a pop icon - for the entire month of January 2003, an audience of 11 million potential viewers will have the opportunity of seeing Ronnie Milsap in concert. DIRECTV, Inc., provider of the nation's leading digital satellite television service, is featuring the mega performers "Ronnie Milsap Live" DVD concert performance from Image Entertainment.
           Ronnie Milsap has enjoyed one of the most distinguished and honored careers of any artist in music history. His smooth, soulful voice and powerful stage presence have earned him 40 #1 hits, six (6) Grammy Awards, eight (8) Country Music Awards and four (4) Academy of Country Music Awards, just to name a few. The multi-dimensional Milsap has earned his reputation as one of music's most cherished performers and his songs have become a mainstay on both country and pop radio.
           On November 6, 2002, DIRECTV announced the activation of its 11 millionth customer over the previous weekend. Eight years after its national launch, DIRECTV is now the home entertainment service of choice in one of every nine TV homes in the United States. This January, those 11 million households will enjoy a classic Ronnie Milsap live concert, compliments of DIRECTV's innovative programming, featuring 'Freeview Concerts.'
           The 'Freeview' concert event will broadcast every Friday, Saturday and Sunday throughout January 2003.

Singing in the Saddle:
The History of the Singing Cowboy

           From the unforgettable image of the desert's open spaces to the distinctive songs of the cowboys gathered around a campfire, nothing captures the imagination quite like the American West does. The independent spirit and sense of adventure the cowboy embodies has fascinated generations of fans. Singing in the Saddle: The History of the Singing Cowboy, just published by Vanderbilt University Press and the Country Music Foundation Press, allows its readers to return to the cowboy way of life. The author, Douglas B. Green, known to millions as Ranger Doug of the Grammy Award-winning Riders In The Sky, lives and breathes the legend daily. As both a musician and a true fan of cowboy music, he has a unique understanding of the performers who brought that dream alive for us.
           The product of a lifetime of research, Singing in the Saddle offers rare photos and movie posters as well as never-before published interviews with many of the genre's best-loved icons. Nowhere else has the musical and film history of the singing cowboy been treated in such detail and depth. From the style's beginnings in radio and vaudeville through well-known stars like Roy Rogers and Gene Autry, Green leads his readers through the years of movies and recordings. The book examines all facets of the phenomenon, including cowgirls, all-black westerns, and many lesser-known figures who have nonetheless had a lasting impact on the singing cowboy as we know him today.
           Most importantly, Singing in the Saddle allows its reader to enter the world of the singing cowboy. Anecdotal stories about how performers succeeded in getting a label's attention, first-hand recollections, and journal entries from the road all combine to make the story of the singing cowboy a personal one. Not a narrative confined to the past, this book offers a chance to take part in the legend.
           Singing in the Saddle: The History of the Singing Cowboy is available at bookstores or directly from Vanderbilt University Press. To order directly from the Press, call 1-800-627-7377.
           Douglas B. Green is a music historian and performer. As Ranger Doug (the Idol of American Youth), he founded Riders In The Sky, the premier western group of the modern era. The group will celebrate its twenty-fifth anniversary in November 2002. -Country Music Hall Of Fame

Steve Wariner Launches SelecTone Records
           November 5, 2002 - Veteran singer, songwriter, guitarist and producer Steve Wariner has launched his own record label, SelecTone Records, for the release of Steal Another Day in February 2003. Containing eleven new songs, plus re-recordings of five of Wariner's #1 hits, Steal Another Day will be his first CD in three years, and his 22nd album overall. The first single, "This Christmas Prayer," co-written with Allen Shamblin, shipped to country radio today earlier this week.
           "Caryn [Wariner's wife and business partner] and I talked about doing a record on our own for years," Wariner says. "When I recorded 'Holes in the Floor of Heaven' we were talking about it, though we ended up bringing the song to Capitol and that was the right decision at that time. But we also watched friends of ours go out on their own, and their success helped us decide now was the right time for us."

Worth a Click ...
A tribute to 'best damn fiddle player in world'. Haggard pays homage to Bob Wills and Texas Playboys at S.F. Jazz Festival.

MERLEFEST 2003 Ticket Sales Begin on November 12
           WILKESBORO, NC: Ticket sales for MerleFest 2003 will begin on Tuesday, November 12, 2002 at 2:00 PM EST. Wilkes Community College will present MerleFest 2003, the 16th annual festival in celebration of the music of the late Merle Watson and his father Doc Watson, on its campus in Wilkesboro, NC on April 24 27, 2003. Starting on November 12th, those with Internet access may acquire their tickets easily by visiting and, if purchasing assigned seats at the Watson Stage, actually pick their seat location on line. Those without Internet access may purchase tickets by calling 1-800-343-7857 (US only) or 336-838-6267 (non-US) from 10 AM through 4 PM, EST, weekdays. Tickets may also be ordered by fax (336-838-6263) and mail (MerleFest; P.O. Box 120; Wilkesboro, NC 28697). Those interested in volunteering for MerleFest should call 336-838-6292. Vendor info: 336-838-6292. Sponsorship inquiries: 919-542-3997.
           MerleFest 2003 has added a number of performers to the lineup since its initial release. These include Buddy & Julie Miller, Bob Bovee & Gail Heil, Lightnin' Wells & Algia Mae Hinton, the Rowan Brothers, Clint, Clarence, & Garet Howard, Brad Leftwich, Wolfe Brothers, the Gospel Jubilators, the Malpass Family, Rayna Gellert, Gary Johnson & the Brushy Mountain Boys, Robert Dotson, Joanne Call, Joanna Hartness, and Isaac Akers. The festival previously had announced more than 80 artists who will join Doc Watson and Merle's son Richard Watson for MerleFest 2003 including Ralph Stanley & the Clinch Mountain Boys, Emmylou Harris, Bruce Hornsby, Belá Fleck & the Flecktones, Hot Rize, Laura Love Band, Asleep at the Wheel, Leahy, Donna the Buffalo, Ricky Skaggs & Kentucky Thunder, Sam Bush Band, Vassar Clements, Nitty Gritty Dirt Band, Guy Clark, Paul Geremia, Rhonda Vincent & the Rage, Tony Rice, Tim O'Brien, Del McCoury Band, the Whites, Norman & Nancy Blake, Doyle Lawson & Quicksilver, Eustace Conway, Peter Rowan, the Jerry Douglas Band, Dale Ann Bradley & Coon Creek, David Holt, Darrell Scott, and the Waybacks.
           MerleFest 2003 artists gained the lion's share of awards at the International Bluegrass Music Awards presented by IBMA in Louisville, Kentucky on October 17. The Del McCoury Band yet again won Entertainer of the Year and Song of the Year, while Mike Bub was tabbed as top bass player. Rhonda Vincent captured Female Vocalist, joined by Doyle Lawson & Quicksilver as Vocal Group and Ricky Skaggs & Kentucky Thunder as Instrumental Group of the Year. IBMA members named Jerry Douglas Dobro Player of the Year. Ralph Stanley's Clinch Mountain Sweethearts claimed Recorded Event of the Year, while Fiddler of the Year Michael Cleveland of Dale Ann Bradley & Coon Creek also won for Best Instrumental Album. His band mate Tom Adams went home as top banjo player. Mandolin Player of the Year went to Adam Steffey of Mountain Heart, which received the Gospel Recorded Performance award for The Journey. Emmylou Harris and the Whites appear on Down From the Mountain, named Album of the Year. Additionally, Dave Freeman, founder of MerleFest sponsor County Sales, was inducted into the Bluegrass Music Hall of Honor, the industry's highest recognition.
           MerleFest 2002 established new records for participation. MerleFest 2002 attendees came from 47 states, the District of Columbia, and at least ten foreign countries. Overall festival participation, including ticketed participants, artists, volunteers, children admitted free and community outreach, totaled 78,294. MerleFest is presented by the Wilkes Community College Endowment Corporation, a 501(c)3 non-profit.

Patti Page Re-Launches Her Web Site
  takes On A New Look. Renowned singing legend, Patti Page is re-launching her newly designed and enhanced website. The new interactive site now features more historical and biographical information, along with current news and concert information. Additionally, a brand new exclusive photo gallery has been designed, highlighting Page's legendary and illustrious career that spans well over 50 years.
           Several of her albums will be available for purchase, including her brand new Christmas album, Sweet Sounds Of Christmas. The 12-song collection is comprised of holiday favorites and is her first new holiday release since 1966. In addition to her music, fans may also purchase Patti Page Organic Pancake Mix and Maple Syrup, produced by Page and her husband on their farm in New England. All items for sale on her website,, may also be purchased by calling 1-800/977-9787.
           Patti Page continues to tour 30-40 concert dates each year and continues to host The Patti Page Show, a national radio show that airs weekly on the Music of Your Life Radio Network. On December 14, Page will make her first appearance in over two years on Nashville's Grand Ole Opry Live, airing nationally on CMT.

'Urban Cowboy' DVD, Musical Coming
           (AP) - Is there another "Urban Cowboy" craze in the making? Twenty-two years after its release, the John Travolta movie that sparked an '80s cowboy craze is being distributed on DVD by Paramount Home Entertainment. And previews begin Tuesday at the Coconut Grove Playhouse in Miami for "Urban Cowboy: A New Musical." The large-scale stage production, which will play through Dec. 1, includes the mechanical bull made famous by Gilley's, Mickey Gilley's former nightclub in Pasadena, Texas, which served as the film's backdrop.
           "Today when you see these young country acts wearing cowboy hats, that came from the `Urban Cowboy' craze," the country singer said. Gilley said he's grateful for his involvement in the movie. "I thank John Travolta every night before bed for keeping my career alive," he said this week. "That film had a huge impact on my career, and still does."
           The DVD, which was released this fall as part of Paramount Home Entertainment's 90th-anniversary celebration, includes outtakes of Travolta and co-star Debra Winger (news) dancing as well as rehearsal footage of them on the mechanical bull.

Mel Tillis Will Tour Again In 2003
           Steve Pritchard, President of Music City Artists, Inc., has announced the company has signed country legend Mel Tillis to an exclusive worldwide booking agreement. Tillis recently announced plans to leave his Branson, Missouri theater to tour again starting in 2003.
           In his 45 year career, Tillis recorded more than 60 albums yielding 9 Number One singles and 36 Top Ten singles; was named CMA Entertainer Of The Year; honored as the BMI Songwriter Of The Decade and inducted in the Nashville Songwriters International Hall Of Fame. He was also voted Comedian Of The Year for six years at the Music City News Awards. In addition to his singing career, Tillis also enjoyed success as an actor appearing in several movies.
           In addition to booking Mel Tillis, Pritchard's company will also be booking the upcoming Pam Tillis / Mel Tillis package tour that will play a limited number of dates. The tour is in support of Pam's new Sony Lucky Dog album "It's All Relative," a tribute to her father where she sings many of his hits or songs he wrote that were hits by other artists. Contact: All Star Publicity, 9 Music Square South * PMB 177 * Nashville, TN 37203. Office: 615-264-3637 * Fax: 615-826-7393 *

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